A Baseball Blog - Scientific and Speculative Thoughts from Third Base
Showing posts with label Spectacular Blunders. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spectacular Blunders. Show all posts

Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Directionless Rockies Continue to Baffle Me

I don’t understand the Colorado Rockies. At all.

News came out yesterday that the team had resigned pitcher Jorge De La Rosa to a two-year deal. And it made me remember something I had thought of many times before: I’m pretty sure the Rockies don’t really have a strategy.

Sure, they have a solid core. Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez are great…when they aren’t injured. Nolan Arenado has prospect pedigree and has shown talent at the major league level (hopefully he avoids the problems with injuries the other two have had). After that, though, they are surprisingly shallow in talent. Sure, Charlie Blackmon, Drew Stubbs, and Corey Dickerson are okay, but that’s pretty much every other decent part they have left.

And you know what’s the sad thing? It didn’t have to be this way.

You know when the last time the Rockies had a winning season was? 2010. It wasn’t even that successful a season, either, with only 83 wins. And yet, here are the things they have done since then to improve:

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Was the Phillies Trade for Hunter Pence One of Baseball's All-Time Blunders?

The big news this week (well, one thing from the non-game front, at least) is the report that the Phillies may have accidentally sent the Astros a player that they didn’t mean to in the Hunter Pence trade. It’s worth noting that this was initially reported by a reporter for the Houston Chronicle, so maybe there’s some bias here, but it’s worth exploring a question it gave me: how bad was the Hunter Pence trade?

First, some background. Pence was traded in the middle of the 2011 season. The Phillies, in need of a corner outfielder to replace Jayson Werth, were a natural fit for his services, and so they acquired him for the next two and a half years at the price of Jarred Cosart, Jon Singleton, Josh Zeid, and a player to be named later that later became Domingo Santana (the player who may or may not have been included by accident). The Phillies were upset in the first round of the playoffs that season, and, after a disappointing start to the 2012 season, shipped Pence off to San Francisco.

Now, I think it’s pretty easy to say that this trade doesn’t look great for Philadelphia. Singleton is off to a solid start for his career, Cosart has been good and shows signs of improvement, and Santana is triple slashing a .295/.368/.498 line in AAA as a 21 year old (nearly six years below that league’s average age). We should give it a few years to be sure, but right now, you have to at least acknowledge that that is a lot to give up for a guy who hung around for only a year before being sent off for a disappointing return (more on that in a bit, though).

But really, that’s only part of the question. The bigger part is: is it a blunder? For those not aware, Rob Neyer once wrote a book called Rob Neyer’s Big Book of Baseball Blunders. In it, he more or less laid out two ways for a trade to be classified. First, a trade could be bad without being a blunder. Sometimes teams just miss on evaluating players, and you give up a Jeff Bagwell in order to get a piece you need to make a playoff run. For every Bagwell that turns out well for the rebuilding team, there are ten Brett Wallaces that fail to make a Hall-level impact.

However, if there were other factors involved, it could be a blunder. Was it a misread of the team’s situation? Was it a shortsighted trade made partly out of spite? Was there some other factor that made it particularly bad? Only then could it be qualified as a blunder.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

St. Louis Cardinals Trade Colby Rasmus, Blunder Spectacularly

The Cardinals now join the Rockies and Angels as teams that can claim to be swindled by Alex Anthopoulos.

According to Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman, the Blue Jays swindled the Cardinals out of 24-year old center fielder Colby Rasmus (and some spare parts) for what essentially amounts to...spare parts.