FanDuel - WFBC

December 09, 2005

Tejada Wants Out of Baltimore: "I've done many things with this team and I haven't seen results," Miguel Tejada said, "and the other teams are getting stronger while the Orioles have not made any signings to strengthen the club." A possible blockbuster! What are the chances and what would it mean to all involved?

posted by gfinsf to baseball at 06:09 AM - 62 comments

Well, with Renteria gone, there's room for Tejada in Boston. The (multi) million dollar question here is: do the A's have space, room and patience for someone like Manny?

posted by chicobangs at 06:53 AM on December 09

But he's with the O's......which makes it even more interesting....same division

posted by gfinsf at 07:09 AM on December 09

Gah. I thought O's, and typed A's. I'm having pre-coffee vowel issues. I'd say the odds of this trade happening are very small, especially with no GM in Boston.

posted by chicobangs at 07:15 AM on December 09

What chico said. It doesn't seem very likely. But as a Sox fan, I'd still like to see it happen. If Manny is going to go, this would be a nice return.

posted by arrmatey at 07:21 AM on December 09

Manny for Tejada, of course Sox do this. Bad trade for O's, similar (not the same as far as bats), but a glove to Manny is a weapon, plus its a RF for SS. Sox will have to throw in Youkilis.

posted by sfts2 at 08:08 AM on December 09

If I am Baltimore, I wouldnt trade Tejada to a team in my division. No matter who I got in return.

posted by daddisamm at 08:26 AM on December 09

Except that this is the only deal where the Sox get any value in return. It actually makes a degree of sense. However, I'm also equally sure that the Sox wouldn't want to play against Manny 19 times. I also think Manny would veto this one, too. I don't think anyone outside of hugely overpaid Ramon Hernandez wants to play in Baltimore right now. Nope - there is no deal. Manny has to stay a Red Sox. Amazing stuff: he's a future Hall of Famer and basically untradable. Gotta love baseball.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:46 AM on December 09

Bad trade for O's, similar (not the same as far as bats), but a glove to Manny is a weapon, plus its a RF for SS. Manny plays Left. Why in the world would the Red Sox need to give up more, because your assesment of Manny's defense is (1) accurate (2) that important of a factor? That makes no sense.

posted by YukonGold at 08:51 AM on December 09

Manny is better than Tejada. The Red Sox would not have to throw anything in. In fact, were I the Sox I would ask for a pitcher as well. The fact is this deal is not going to happen - why would the Os want a $57 million left fielder when they need to rebuild most of that team? If they trade Tejada it will be to another division, or the NL, for cheaper prospects and talent. Not for Manny Ramirez.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:56 AM on December 09

Whats the deal with players signing huge, unbelievable contracts, and then asking out cause they're not happy. Screw Miggy, Screw Manny the teams should make them stay.

posted by Lunger24 at 08:59 AM on December 09

Whats the deal with players signing huge, unbelievable contracts, and then asking out cause they're not happy. Screw Miggy, Screw Manny the teams should make them stay. I take it you've never had a job where you looked around and thought "Man, I've made a terrible mistake joining this company."

posted by grum@work at 10:59 AM on December 09

Grum...i dont think any of us has ever had a 57 million dollar job and thought we had made a terrible mistake.

posted by scottyooooo at 11:07 AM on December 09

It's not about the money!

posted by YukonGold at 11:17 AM on December 09

Ramirez is not "better" than Tejada. Tejada is a good clubhouse person and a cheerleader in the dugout. He also is always in the game, and not on Pluto like Ramirez. In short, he wants to win and cares about it. Oh, and he has a brain, something that Ramirez lost the last time he crapped.

posted by OldSchoolBall at 11:21 AM on December 09

I take it you've never had a job where you looked around and thought "Man, I've made a terrible mistake joining this company." True, but it's not like the O's weren't a terrible mistake two years ago. I hope this is just Tejada leaning hard on the management to make some signings and improve a team that was 21 games back in the East.

posted by rcade at 11:22 AM on December 09

Since I was fixing the link, I found a related story that doesn't appear to require registration. Newspapers should share registration.

posted by rcade at 11:27 AM on December 09

Grum...i dont think any of us has ever had a 57 million dollar job and thought we had made a terrible mistake. That's just a difference in scales., money is irrelevant I mean, you could have all the money in the world and still be unfulfilled with a team that won't go in the direction you were told they would.

posted by dfleming at 12:01 PM on December 09

Ramirez is not "better" than Tejada. Tejada is a good clubhouse person and a cheerleader in the dugout. He also is always in the game, and not on Pluto like Ramirez. In short, he wants to win and cares about it. Oh, and he has a brain, something that Ramirez lost the last time he crapped. Oh, but he is. Ramirez, warts and all, is one of the best right handed hitters of all time - averaging 40 hrs and 130 rbi in the last six years. Tejada is a perennial All-Star and one of the top 3 SS in the game - but he is not a better hitter than Ramirez. Yes, his defence is better - but I don't think that's nearly as impressive or important. You may not like Manny's attitude and loafishness (which is overplayed in the media - Manny wins games - 34 win shares compared to Tejada's 20. Also, it doesn't appear that his teammates dislike him), but such things should be put in the proper context - production counts. Especially the kind of production Manny gives. And for such a 'team' guy - Miggy seems to be doing the same thing Manny is. Neglecting his contract and requesting a trade.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 12:02 PM on December 09

Oh, but he is. Ramirez, warts and all, is one of the best right handed hitters of all time - averaging 40 hrs and 130 rbi in the last six years. Tejada is a perennial All-Star and one of the top 3 SS in the game I think we would all agree that Manny is a better hitter than Tejada, but the positional difference can't be overlooked. Manny is a terrible outfielder, while Tejada plays solid shorttop. The simple fact is; a big bat at shortstop is much more valuable than a big bat in a corner outfield position. If you lose Tejada what production could you hope to get from your SS? .270/10/65 would be reasonable. If you lose Manny it wouldn't be difficult to replace him with a corner outfielder that can give you .285/25/90. Manny is the better player, but Tejada has more relative value becuase a highly productive shortstop is a rarity.

posted by bigrobbieb at 12:48 PM on December 09

True, but it's not like the O's weren't a terrible mistake two years ago. Please correct me if I'm in error. I'm depending on my memory, which is usually a mistake for me. Now - what were we talking about - oh yea, didn't the O's sign Sosa, Palmero and Lopez the same year they signed Miggy? If so, he had every right to believe the O's were serious about winning. I actually thought they'd be a bigger threat to my Yanks than the Red Sox. And for such a 'team' guy - Miggy seems to be doing the same thing Manny is. Neglecting his contract and requesting a trade. Nicely put, smokester. I read all the above, but couldn't put 2 and 2 together.

posted by drevl at 12:55 PM on December 09

the positional difference can't be overlooked. Manny is a terrible outfielder Please prove this without using a highly publicized error from the 2004 MLB playoffs. Manny may not be a gold glove, but I don't characterize him as terrible. If you lose Manny it wouldn't be difficult to replace him with a corner outfielder that can give you .285/25/90. Again, I'm having a hard time following some of the concepts in these comments. How is it replacing Manny's numbers with those numbers? Especially if you use Weedy's examples of win shares?

posted by YukonGold at 01:30 PM on December 09

My point is that productive corner outfielders are fairly common, whereas shortstops that produce offensively are very rare.

posted by bigrobbieb at 01:42 PM on December 09

Manny wins games - 34 win shares compared to Tejada's 20 Weedy, I feel like we stat geeks ruined you. And yet, you're absolutely right. If you think Manny is a "terrible" outfielder, you have a very high threshold. Manny could start in center for the Reds when Griffey is hurt. Willie Mo and friends are terrible outfielders, guys who can't find their own ass with two hands and a flashlight, run routes out of the Bernie Williams' school of outfielding, let balls drop in front of them because they aren't confident, etc. I watched Kevin Millar play a few dozen games in the outfield when Trot Nixon was hurt. That's a bad outfielder.

posted by yerfatma at 02:24 PM on December 09

I done did use them schmancy winny shares to make my ar-cue-ment sound S-M-R-T (I mean S-M-A-R-T). On preview: yes - you've ruined me.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:34 PM on December 09

For all the badmouthing about disgruntled Manny, has anyone noticed that he's only been on two teams in 13 years. In this day and age, that's a sign of loyalty above and beyond the call of duty. Also, on his fielding. Granted, he's no Yaz - but left field in Fenway is a bitch to play. His 17 assists last year is an amazing number, even for the shallow outfield at fenway. Highly thought of leftfielders like Cabrera, Mench and Carlos Lee only had 12, 8 and 8, respectively. Manny ain't the best, but I wouldn't mind seeing Matsui in center and Manny in left in the Bronx. Besides, he grew up in the shaddow of Yankee Stadium.

posted by drevl at 02:36 PM on December 09

The thing is that the O's will never trade him within the division, even the League is within question. Scratch out the A's and Sox. Also, don't mention the Yankees, because the O's hate them as much as the Nats. Maybe the Angels will finally get Manny in a four-way trade inlcuding Tejada, and probably the Phillies. Also, the Angels could give up Manny and trade for Tejada. The A's won;t go away soon, but they will never get Tejada back. Dinally, let us return to the Dodgers. The Dodgers are the team with nothing trying to pull a trade that will appear on the front page of evey newspaper in this country, and probably some other countries too. They first tried it with Manny, they have shelfed Manny for now and might for good, and are probably hunting again. Maybe, they'll take a shot at Tejada, and get him. They'll probably convert him into an outfielder becaus that is what they need.

posted by Joe88 at 03:34 PM on December 09

Granted, he's no Yaz - but left field in Fenway is a bitch to play. Agreed. Moreover, Jerry Remy, who I trust on the subject, is a fan of Manny's outfield play in Boston. Manny plays really shallow, which is one of the factors in his high assist total. The other factor is the brain-dead third base coaches who assume the conventional wisdom about Manny's fielding is correct and run on him even though he's leading the league is assists.

posted by yerfatma at 03:41 PM on December 09

His 17 assists last year is an amazing number, even for the shallow outfield at fenway. Outfield assists are probably the most useless defensive metric you can find for that position. Jesse Barfield (considered by many to have one of the greatest outfield arms in the history of baseball), got 17 assists in 158 games in 1987. Manny Ramirez got 17 assists in 149 games in 2005. There wouldn't be a single knowledgable baseball person on the planet that would say that Ramirez had a better arm in 2005 than Barfield did in 1987. You can rack up outfield assists in one of three ways:

  1. You have a cannon for an arm. - Barfield-style, you just keep gunning out anyone that even THINKS about going to second base, or 1st-to-3rd on a single. Even with your reputation and everyone playing cautious on the basepaths, you are still mowing them down.
  2. You have a wet noodle of an arm. - Everybody and their brother knows you throw like a girl, so they run EVERY chance they can. Even if you only throw out 5% of the runners, you still are going to rack up the assists, just based on the high percentage of baserunners that want to challenge you, even from an average number of baserunners in total.
  3. You have an average arm and you play for a pitching-poor team. - You throw out an average number of baserunners, but you get an above average number of those to begin with. Only an average number of them actually try to take an extra base, but there are so many of them to begin with, you can't help but get assists, Mr. Average-Guy.

posted by grum@work at 05:23 PM on December 09

Yeah but what about his baserunning? :p

posted by lilnemo at 05:38 PM on December 09

I get it, Grum(py). That's all good stuff, but I was hardly pushing Manny as a great outfielder, just not god-awful. Also, I was comparing him to left fielders of today, not right fielders of yesteryear. I've seen Colavito, Clemente, Evens and others with great arms. It's not just a coincidence that none of them played in left, so whereas your point #1 is a true enough statement - it hardly applies to left fielders. Maybe you can answer a question for me. How many teams would be worse off with Manny in left than with their current left fielder?

posted by drevl at 10:23 AM on December 10

What biggierobieb said. Manny is a below average defensive outfielder, even in probably the LEAST demanding position in the field. Not terrible? He cuts off balls in the outfield....bwaaahahahhahha. Sheesh. Best hitters of all time? Good hitter, with an excellent work ethic - ON HIS HITTING. Not one of the best all time, come on, diminished pitching, band box parks. Please. Yukon Gold, the difference in my point between him being in RF (vs LF) is NOTHING. Having .300+ 25+ HR bat at SS is so much more valuable than having that bat (even a significantly better one) in LF. Win shares? I don't know, but as a baseball coach, IN MY JUDGEMENT this is not even close. Prove it? I just watch him play.

posted by sfts2 at 04:32 PM on December 10

One last thing Weedy. Roll another one. "Yes, his defence is better - but I don't think that's nearly as impressive or important." Its not JUST a question of his defense versus Manram. You have to take into account the fact that his position is THE MOST important defensive position on the field except for catcher. What wins championships? Defense and pitching is a cliche. Sort of true.

posted by sfts2 at 04:40 PM on December 10

One last thing Weedy. Roll another one. "Yes, his defence is better - but I don't think that's nearly as impressive or important." Its not JUST a question of his defense versus Manram. You have to take into account the fact that his position is THE MOST important defensive position on the field except for catcher. What wins championships? Defense and pitching is a cliche. Sort of true.

posted by sfts2 at 04:48 PM on December 10

How many teams would be worse off with Manny in left than with their current left fielder? Not a single damn one of them. His hitting is so damn amazing, it's scary. Even if he's a stone-glove in the outfield, you play him because you want his bat. He'd have to be Ortiz-level fielding to keep him off the field. Good hitter, with an excellent work ethic - ON HIS HITTING. Not one of the best all time, come on, diminished pitching, band box parks. Please. Manny Ramirez is ranked #20 on the all-time list for OPS+. Manny Ramirez is ranked #9 on the all-time list for SLG. Manny Ramirez is ranked #40 on the all-time list for OBP. Manny Ramirez is ranked #76 on the all-time list for AVG. Manny Ramirez is ranked #33 on the all-time list for HR. Based on rate stats (since his career isn't completed yet, it's not really fair to measure his counting stats), he'd easily rank as one of the 50 best hitters in the HISTORY of the game. Not a good hitter; a great hitter. Diminished pitching? In his 13 seasons he played:

  • 17 of the top 50 ERA+ pitchers in history have pitched
  • 31 of the top 50 K/9IP pitchers in history have pitched
  • 21 of the top 50 K/BB pitchers in history have pitched

posted by grum@work at 10:49 PM on December 10

Grum, gotta say, you usually sound like you know what your talking about. OK, ManRam is one of the better hitters today. That to me is a good hitter, above average, maybe excellent, not great yet, maybe at the end one of the top 50 hitters ever, maybe, and not even close as an all-around player baseball player. He's not Bonds, he's not Pujols, he's not Rodriguez, he's not Andruw Jones (slightly less bat much better fielder), he's not Griffey, he's not Guererro, he's not even the best hitter on his own team. He hit fucking under .300 last season, 40th in the league. How can he be great, or as I was responding to, one of the best all-time? Please stop listening to ESPN hype. Watch the game. Learn the game. Fuck stats. When was the last time any of you guys quoting win shares and rate stats stepped onto a baseball field? You must be one of the 6 people left in the world that think small parks and watered down pitching and performance enhancing drugs have not inflated hitting stats. You want to talk scary, I've seen him misplay 3 balls in one inning. This type of thing happens ALL the time. The poster above talking about assists is completely right. Its not about stats, watch the fucking terrible jumps and misreads he has on the ball. I really hope the ManRam Tejada deal doesn't happen, because thats a GREAT trade for the BoSox. Especially after losing Renteria, picking up Marte,and since they're shopping Youkilis - that might get the deal done, especialy since Palmiero is done. BTW, career? ManRam over 900 games in RF, just over 500 in LF.

posted by sfts2 at 03:18 AM on December 11

Watch the game. Learn the game. Fuck stats. When was the last time any of you guys quoting win shares and rate stats stepped onto a baseball field? Exactly how does stepping onto a baseball field determine the ability to view the information provided? In the same way that scientists can dissect information about the moon, they sure as heck don't have to be astronauts to do so. You can't "fuck stats". Stats are the only way to properly compare players from different teams and different eras. A person cannot possibly watch every game played by every player in the history of the sport. Only two things can possibly be done to compare players from different eras:

  • Use statistical analysis.
  • Use anecdotal evidence.
The problem with using anecdotal evidence is that it tends to be biased. For example: if you were to read all the newspaper articles about Derek Jeter in the first 5 years of his career, you'd swear he was the second coming of Ozzie Smith with his glove. Everyone liked to praise the one or two flashy plays he made every season, but didn't say diddly-squat about the hundreds of ground balls that were "just out of his reach". The statistics bore this out, but nobody writes articles or produces highlight films of Jeter doing a poor job of fielding. And why do you keep saying things like the pitching is "watered down". I've provided evidence that some of the greatest pitchers in the history of the game have pitched in the time that Ramirez has played. As well, the game is now based on specialized roles in the bullpen, something that the players of old did not run into as often as the players of today do. He's not Bonds, he's not Pujols, he's not Rodriguez, he's not Andruw Jones (slightly less bat much better fielder), he's not Griffey, he's not Guererro, he's not even the best hitter on his own team. He hit fucking under .300 last season, 40th in the league. How can he be great, or as I was responding to, one of the best all-time? No, he's not Bonds or Pujols or ARod. That doesn't mean he's still not one of the best ever. You did read the information I provided, right? Where I showed how he's ranked among the best hitters of all time? And please explain to me how you can bad mouth Ramirez for having a "bad" season this year, but then use Griffey as a counter-example? Just so we are clear, Ramirez's "bad" season (156 OPS+) is exactly in line with his career average (156 OPS+), which would be the 20th greatest of all time and 4th best among active players (with only Bonds, Pujols and Thomas having higher career OPS+ among active players). And he is the best hitter on his team. Comparison of Ortiz vs Ramirez for the 3 seasons they've played together: OPS+ (by season): Ramirez - 160, 152, 156 Ortiz - 144, 145, 161 Pro-rated OPS+ over that span: Ramirez - 156 Ortiz - 150 HR: Ramirez - 125 Ortiz - 119 And just to save space, I'll mention that he beats him in SLG, OBP, and (your choice of stats) AVG. And one more thing: You must be one of the 6 people left in the world that think batting average is a good measurement of hitting performance. performance enhancing drugs have not inflated hitting stats Do you have evidence that Ramirez used PEDs? Has anyone ever accused him of using PEDs? If not, and the rest of the league seems to be doing so (under your accusation), then his performance compared to the rest of the league (OPS+) is even more astounding. You want to talk scary, I've seen him misplay 3 balls in one inning. This type of thing happens ALL the time. Really? He had a whopping 7 errors all of last season. The most he's ever had was 9, when he played RF for Cleveland. This is the problem with anecdotal evidence. It's easy to remember the extremes (errors or great plays) but nobody seems to remember the routine (out of reach or simple catches). Someone reading your description and going to a baseball game would get the impression that Ramirez is going to make misplays every inning, and you know that isn't true.

posted by grum@work at 10:04 AM on December 11

If you think comparing stats brings you any closer to insight in comparing players of different eras, I can only say I disagree. Honestly, I find the whole concept of trying to do so a major waste of time and energy. I coach the game, I played the game, I scout players and I have my opinions. I'll let the rest of you debate that aspect of the sport. Frankly, I was surprised your debating this so strongly, because you made an excellent point about the assist above. A string of unrelated points. I never said he had a bad season this year. Asking me if I have evidence of his using steroids is pretty weak...Ortiz was in line for MVP this year, not Ramirez. As Yankee fan, I was afraid of Ortiz and not Ramirez. I don't think BA is a good indicator, or perhaps I should say it tells a very flawed story. What kind of abs is he getting, what kind of ball is he hitting, what kind of pitching is he facing when he performs and in what kind of park? Where does he bat? What kind of protection? How many on base when he hits? On and on. I coached juco player this past summer, he batted .496 last and won the juco ws. He had like 9 ks in 4 years. Pretty good stats, right? Came to play with us in the summer, consistently hit type 3 ground balls to the right side because he didn't want to walk or k. Bad at bats consistently. He wound up hitting under .200. Stats lied about his production. I noticed that you did'nt use last seasons stats to back up your point re ManRam v Ortiz because they tell a completely different story. What a surprise... Ramirez had few errors because he can not get near a ball. My evidence is not anecdotal, its first hand. I watch the fucking guy play. Your evidence is more anecdotal. Thats what I'm talking about, watch ESPN or actually watch a game. You can choose to get your info your way, and I'll continue in mine. Some stats can tell a piece of a story about a player, many are over-rated. To overly rely upon them to make judgements about men on the field (if you are actually managing a game, and not sitting in an armchair) is sheer foolishness. If you think that information gleaned from reading books is as insightful as scouting players, coaching players, and playing, then good for you. I'd like to play your team for money. I'm not going to engage in this type of discussion too much. You have used stats to back up every point you've tried to make. I think its mostly bullshit. Most guys who actually know baseball (scouts, coaches, etc) would agree with me I think. Actually if you knew how the books are kept on most college, summerball, AAU, and HS teams, you would rely upon them even less. Saying ManRam is one of the best hitters all-time (which I've heard many times in the media) is a crock. I hope he goes to your team, and stays out of the Bronx. I hope the Sox do not get Tejada. He is however, a very good hitter, and a terrible outfielder. In my opinion.

posted by sfts2 at 04:35 PM on December 11

If you think comparing stats brings you any closer to insight in comparing players of different eras, I can only say I disagree. Honestly, I find the whole concept of trying to do so a major waste of time and energy. I coach the game, I played the game, I scout players and I have my opinions. I'll let the rest of you debate that aspect of the sport. Frankly, I was surprised your debating this so strongly, because you made an excellent point about the assist above. A string of unrelated points. I never said he had a bad season this year. Asking me if I have evidence of his using steroids is pretty weak...Ortiz was in line for MVP this year, not Ramirez. As Yankee fan, I was afraid of Ortiz and not Ramirez. I don't think BA is a good indicator, or perhaps I should say it tells a very flawed story. What kind of abs is he getting, what kind of ball is he hitting, what kind of pitching is he facing when he performs and in what kind of park? Where does he bat? What kind of protection? How many on base when he hits? On and on. I coached juco player this past summer, he batted .496 last and won the juco ws. He had like 9 ks in 4 years. Pretty good stats, right? Came to play with us in the summer, consistently hit type 3 ground balls to the right side because he didn't want to walk or k. Bad at bats consistently. He wound up hitting under .200. Stats lied about his production. I noticed that you did'nt use last seasons stats to back up your point re ManRam v Ortiz because they tell a completely different story. What a surprise... Ramirez had few errors because he can not get near a ball. My evidence is not anecdotal, its first hand. I watch the fucking guy play. Your evidence is more anecdotal. Thats what I'm talking about, watch ESPN or actually watch a game. You can choose to get your info your way, and I'll continue in mine. Some stats can tell a piece of a story about a player, many are over-rated. To overly rely upon them to make judgements about men on the field (if you are actually managing a game, and not sitting in an armchair) is sheer foolishness. If you think that information gleaned from reading books is as insightful as scouting players, coaching players, and playing, then good for you. I'd like to play your team for money. I'm not going to engage in this type of discussion too much. You have used stats to back up every point you've tried to make. I think its mostly bullshit. Most guys who actually know baseball (scouts, coaches, etc) would agree with me I think. Actually if you knew how the books are kept on most college, summerball, AAU, and HS teams, you would rely upon them even less. Saying ManRam is one of the best hitters all-time (which I've heard many times in the media) is a crock. I hope he goes to your team, and stays out of the Bronx. I hope the Sox do not get Tejada. He is however, a very good hitter, and a terrible outfielder. In my opinion.

posted by sfts2 at 04:36 PM on December 11

Ouch... consistently double posting. Sorry.

posted by sfts2 at 04:37 PM on December 11

My evidence is not anecdotal, its first hand. Wow. I'm looking at everything you wrote and I'd put you somewhere around 99 on the comments+ scale. Everything you wrote is something we can get on talk radio or in any bar. Basically replacement-level comments. Bo. Ring.

posted by yerfatma at 06:12 AM on December 12

Asking me if I have evidence of his using steroids is pretty weak. You are the one that brought up the accusation, stating I must be one of only 6 people left that doesn't believe "performance enhancing drugs have not inflated hitting stats". The only way it discounts his stats is to suggest that he uses them as well. So that's why I asked you. Far from weak, it's just a follow-up question. I coach the game, I played the game, I scout players and I have my opinions. So you've coached, scouted and played with major league players all the way back to the Cy Young era? Otherwise, it doesn't make a difference what you've seen if you can't say you've watched every game by all the players from different eras. As Yankee fan, I was afraid of Ortiz and not Ramirez. Really? Was that just through observing them? Because, I'll let you in on a secret: Ramirez played better against the Yankees than Ortiz did in 2005 Ramirez: 81PA, .324/.464/.619, 6HR Ortiz: 82PA, .295/.390/.563, 5HR So whatever you do, be sure to tell me otherwise because I wasn't there to watch every game the Yankees/Red Sox played. I noticed that you did'nt use last seasons stats to back up your point re ManRam v Ortiz because they tell a completely different story. What a surprise... Actually, I did. If you had read what I had written, I listed the stats from the players for all three seasons they played together. I listed that Ortiz had a higher OPS+ for last season, but over the span of the 3 seasons, Ramirez is still the better player. You didn't read what I wrote? What a surprise... My evidence is not anecdotal, its first hand. I watch the fucking guy play. Your evidence is more anecdotal. To quote Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. (see yerfatma's comment) I'd like to play your team for money. I was waiting for the illogical personal challenge comment. Then you follow-up with more posturing and conjecture about how since you are "involved" in baseball in some way, the basic nature of player evaluation through statistics is "mostly bullshit". Then you make a backhanded comment about how "most guys who actually know about baseball would agree with [you]". However, you follow up with your own counter-argument by stating: "Actually if you knew how the books are kept on most college, summerball, AAU, and HS teams, you would rely upon them even less." What's in these books? Essays about the player's batting prowess, fielding skill and arm strength? Pretty drawings of how they swing a bat or circle under a fly ball? Or is it possible that there might be some statistics being kept about the players? But you just told me that statistics are "mostly bullshit"... Saying ManRam is one of the best hitters all-time (which I've heard many times in the media) is a crock. You keep repeating this over and over. I keep presenting information to refute it, and you ignore it and keep stating your point. Do you actually have any evidence to the contrary that would support the idea that Manny Ramirez is not one of the best hitters of all-time? Is there anything (other than your heart-felt opinion) to suggest that he's not in the top 0.5% of hitters in history?

posted by grum@work at 07:52 AM on December 12

Ramirez played better against the Yankees than Ortiz did in 2005 Ramirez: 81PA, .324/.464/.619, 6HR Ortiz: 82PA, .295/.390/.563, 5HR Well grum, in all that stuff between you and stfs2 I agree with you - except for your questioning his opinion that Ortiz was scarier than Manny (against the Yanks) last year. Per the stats, Manny was better. But I absolutely guaranty to you that Ortiz is the one who came up with the clutch hits. When Ortiz came up I had a hard time looking at the tv. I just new a game winning double or homer was about to happen.

posted by drevl at 09:56 AM on December 12

Insulting stats is like insulting one of grum's kids.

posted by HATER 187 at 10:01 AM on December 12

Per the stats, Manny was better. But I absolutely guaranty to you that Ortiz is the one who came up with the clutch hits. Looking at it from the other side of things, I kind of agree with what you're saying, but I grum's point was in response to the idea Manny did nothing against the Yankees.

posted by yerfatma at 10:36 AM on December 12

Insulting stats is like insulting one of grum's kids. posted by HATER 187 at 10:01 AM CST on December 12 I well know that. I nearly didn't post it knowing that half of SpoFi would jump all over me. I tip my hat to Statman.

posted by drevl at 12:33 PM on December 12

Insulting stats is like insulting one of grum's kids. posted by HATER 187 at 10:01 AM CST on December 12 I was going to take offence to that, but then I had to step back and think about it for a minute more. And you know what? I agree. I do seem to defend stats a little too hard. I don't believe that stats are the be-all end-all of player evaluation, but I also don't believe the idea that "stats are bullshit" either. If I had to break it down: Stats: good for long term evaluation. Scouting: good for immediate evaluation, or long term evaluation if there aren't enough usable stats to make judgements (ie: high school players have notoriously wild statistics because of the varying level of opponents they face). I nearly didn't post it knowing that half of SpoFi would jump all over me. Never, EVER be afraid to take on someone (or poke fun of them) on this site. Everyone needs to be kicked around to keep them honest. A few shots to the ego does a person good.

posted by grum@work at 02:15 PM on December 12

Facts. pfffff. Facts are useless they coud be used to prove any thing. -H.S.

posted by HATER 187 at 04:16 PM on December 12

grum, I think you're getting angry and its affecting your comprehension. Some other are also misquoting me or mis representing what I said. You said this "You are the one that brought up the accusation, stating I must be one of only 6 people left that doesn't believe "performance enhancing drugs have not inflated hitting stats". The only way it discounts his stats is to suggest that he uses them as well. I said this 'You must be one of the 6 people left in the world that think small parks and watered down pitching and performance enhancing drugs have not inflated hitting stats. ' Obviously its not the only way, because I brought up 3 contributing factors, not just 'roids. And I repeat, using the argument ''well do you have evidence that he used them?' is really weak. Of course, I do not. But never mind about that, I realize it was the anger talking. The point of this of course, and my best refutation of your stats about top pitching is that top pitchers of today are definitely better than the top pitchers of yesterday (gross generalization). The problem is of course that the bottom half is much worse than yesterday, (the #1 on Tampa was the #5 on the St Louis Browns) which inflates hitting stats. As does band-box parks. As does the probably 1/3 of players who actively use illegal performance enhancing drugs over the last 25 years. This type of issue makes comparing any stats across eras in any sport slightly better than self-abuse. It may be fun, it may sell books, and it may be interesting to some people. Its just not real, or accurate, or meaningful. You get stats on talk radio. You get Manny 'one of the best hitters all-time' (maybe) on talk radio. I rarely listen to it. Tell me where on talk radio you can listen to a discussion about the quality of an ab, or how a catcher frames a pitch, or the effect of arm slot on the movement of a slider. That I would listen to. yerfatma, I am not sure which part of any post you were reading, but I never said anything even resembling the concept that Manny did nothing against the Yanks. I'll just quote Casey Stengel, who I guess you might admit knew a thing or two. "I don't like them fellas who drive in two runs and let in three." BTW, the 'book' I was talking about is the 'scorebook' the one from which all stats come from. I would have thought that a stats maven would have understood this. Perhaps I should stop here. But no! I knew as I was writing it, that my use of non-stats (baseball experience and observation) would be perceived as arrogant, and I thought several times about erasing it, because I am not trying to pontificate or hold my opinions above others, AND I knew it came off as though I was. I am just trying to explain something that I think you could benefit from, which is to get to know the game on the field. Go to a high school or a A class short season game, smell the grass and the dirt. Wipe the blood from the strawberry on your ass cheek - so to speak. Maybe I was wrong, and this wasn't the forum...I just did not know how else to express the point I was trying to make. I still do not. When say I would like to play your team for money, it was a rhetorical statement. The point is that stats become quite meaningless once you step on the field, and most baseball people that I know agree with that. They are a good shortcut if you cannot watch guys play, not much more. I know people love them, they are part of baseball, they are just a poor substitute for judgement, but can help guide judgement in the right hands. What I mean is that if you have the baseball judgment, stats are a more valuable tool than just slavishly quoting them to back up all points, because you know where they fall short. You want to know a stat I use? OPS (no, not that one, which I do agree is better than BA) Offensive Production Statistics which grades ABs and pitchers on a scale 0-6 based upon the result of the pitch, hard hit balls are worth more (to hitter, less for pitchers)regardless of whether they are caught or not, seeing eye singles, while valuable to BA are worth less than line outs. Using this type of stat actually can provide meaningful input in terms of making a baseball decision. (Which to tie this back to the original thread, I think is what GMs are trying to do when evaluating trades) I think anecdotal means 'based on casual observations or indications rather than rigorous or scientific analysis' what do you think it means? Now, my observations are not casual, and I believe them to be fairly rigorous, but they may or not be scientific. So perhaps me forming opinions by observing players (which seems to have certain qualities of science) is not scientific, but at least its first hand.

posted by sfts2 at 05:38 PM on December 12

I think you're getting angry and its affecting your comprehension. I don't get angry about this. If you'll notice, I was not the first one to insult the other in this discussion. You made the statement that you believe steroids are affecting performances in today's game (unless you are also one of the "only 6 people" mentioned in your original comment). You said this as part of your reasoning (including the watered-down pitching, which I disproved, and small ball parks, which I can't disprove since you haven't given me any references to compare just yet, since park size has varied wildly throughout the history of baseball) as to why Ramirez's stats aren't impressive. I asked if you believed Ramirez used steroids because I wanted to know if you thought his stats were among those inflated by PEDs. If you did think they were inflated, I asked what proof/conjecture you'd heard. If you didn't think they were, then it supports the point that his stats are even more impressive (re: OPS+) given you believe OTHERS are using PED. As does the probably 1/3 of players who actively use illegal performance enhancing drugs over the last 25 years. First of all, where did you get that number from? I don't think I've seen a single conjecture by a reputed source that would put the use at that high a number for that long a period of time. Me thinks that was pulled from thin air. The problem is of course that the bottom half is much worse than yesterday, (the #1 on Tampa was the #5 on the St Louis Browns) which inflates hitting stats. Really? The #1 starting pitcher on Tampa Bay in 2005 was Scott Kazmir. He has an ERA+ of 114 (that means he was approximately 14% better than the league average pitcher). Looking through the history of the Browns, I can find only 2 seasons not in WWII (the worst talent pool era in baseball history post-1900) where Kazmir wouldn't be the #1, #2 or #3 pitcher. Those are 1908 and 1934. I also found 2 more seasons where it's debatable (1922, 1923). That means for 43 seasons of the remaining 47 seasons (1902-1953, excluding 1941-1945), Kazmir would have been better than at least the #4 pitcher (since they primarily used 4 man rotations). Of course, this is assuming that median pitcher then would be the equivalent to a median pitcher now, which is a bit of a stretch when you figure every other sport on the planet has seen their participants get better over time. Everyone is getting faster, stronger, smarter and better in every sport, but you want to assume that the pitchers are getting worse? I'm sure you'll say something like "less teams = only high quality pitchers made it", but you'd be ignoring the fact that there is a much larger pool of players to choose from nowadays than at any time in baseball history, and the number of teams hasn't increased at the same rate. Ignoring the obvious problem that segregation had on the sport until 1947 (and really until 1960), you'd have to take into account that the scouting systems are bigger, foreign players are more accepted than ever before and training is at its peak in MLB history. You get stats on talk radio. Really? I'd love to know what sports talk radio shows actually do a proper breakdown of stats. The only ones I've heard usually involve "Manny sucks!" and "Red Sox suck!" and "Jeter rules!" and "We should trade Manny for Tejada and Roberts!" idiocy. It panders to the lowest common denominator, and that usually doesn't involve an education that can comprehend stats beyond HR, RBI, Wins, Runs, AVG and Errors. Believe me, I'd given up on "talk radio" a long time ago. The only time "sports" and "radio" cross paths with me is when I want to listen to the game on the radio, or find out the scores. BTW, the 'book' I was talking about is the 'scorebook' the one from which all stats come from. I would have thought that a stats maven would have understood this. Perhaps I should stop here. But no! So, in fact, it's a scorebook you were talking about. I couldn't figure out if the "them" you mentioned were "stats" or "the book". And yes, I know what a scorebook is... So they keep a book of stats, but don't rely on them? I'm not sure what your point is here. I am just trying to explain something that I think you could benefit from, which is to get to know the game on the field. Go to a high school or a A class short season game, smell the grass and the dirt. Wipe the blood from the strawberry on your ass cheek - so to speak. Maybe I was wrong, and this wasn't the forum...I just did not know how else to express the point I was trying to make. I still do not. Interesting assumption you've made about me here. You are assuming that I don't have any history of being involved in the game, or not watching enough games. Is there a reason for your assumption? I mean, I figure that attending quite a few major league games (Blue Jays and Tigers), AAA games (Ottawa Lynx), some Canadian Baseball League games (London Monarchs), playing baseball in high school (Scarborough) and managing a softball team for 10 years might be enough for you, but I could be wrong. Again, it's the assumption that if you don't play the game, you don't know what you are talking about. It's a silly fallacy. It's like saying scientists can't talk about space walks because they aren't astronauts and have never been up in space. [Stats] are a good shortcut if you cannot watch guys play, not much more. That's the point! You can't watch all of the players play all of the time. So what method of evaluation are you going to make? Are you going to use the written word from a scout who has only observed a handful of games (since they have to travel from city to city)? Or would you rather use statistical evidence to provide information about the player? You want to know a stat I use? OPS (no, not that one, which I do agree is better than BA) Offensive Production Statistics which grades ABs and pitchers on a scale 0-6 based upon the result of the pitch, hard hit balls are worth more (to hitter, less for pitchers)regardless of whether they are caught or not, seeing eye singles, while valuable to BA are worth less than line outs. That's nothing new or different than what is already done by the "stats" guys you casually derided earlier. If you crack open a copy of Baseball Forecaster, you'll see that they base part of their statistical analysis on the ground ball, fly ball and line drive ratios of the hitters (and what the pitchers gave up). Those are measured statistics that are provided by MLB to all the teams (and subscribers), and are used (as part of a formula) to make their predictions for the following year.

posted by grum@work at 01:18 AM on December 13

my boy (grum) is wicked smaaht!

posted by YukonGold at 06:42 AM on December 13

How you like them apples?

posted by yerfatma at 07:38 AM on December 13

I make my assumptions because of what you say. There has been very little baseball related knowledge that does not relate to statistics in any of your posts. This characteristic of arm chair bound 'fans', not those with any real insight. I mean, you could not even infer that in the context of a discussion about baseball statsistics, that when I said 'book' that I was talking about a scorebook. Thus, I assume you have never played or coached and probably play beer league softball. You have also consistently misunderstood and misrepresented what I have said. Thus this is an unsatisfying conversation. For example, where have I insulted you? If you feel like anything that I said was a personal insult, then I sincerely apologize. Where have I said that Ramirez stats were unimpressive? In fact, I said just the opposite. Thirdly, I have only tried to put 'stats' in their place. They are not the be all and end all, which you said you agree with in one post, but ALWAYS come back to them. Let me say this straight out: Any GM who makes a decision to trade even up Manny Ramirez for Miguel Tejada (back to the topic) based upon ManRam's marginally better hitting, has gotten hosed. Of couse, I am not taking into account things like salary, relative age, clubhouse demeanor, etc. Re stats in general: My point consistently is that it is impossible, even with stats to compare players, now, it may be the best thing we have to do so, which is why its used, but its virtually meaningless, IN MY VIEW. You seem to want to always take the discussion down a statistical road and you make quite strange conclusions and present them as fact, when I dispute YOUR ENTIRE PREMISE. That statistics, while a useful guide, in the hands of someone who knows the game on the field, can be used to compare players across eras. Its mental masturbation, and it forms the basis of all of your energy regarding baseball, it seems to me. In any event, knock yourself out. I'll continue to travel to games on weekends to recruit players (using stats as a tool), coaching youth and college players, and helping local high school kids play baseball in college. This way we can both be happy. Regarding the number 1/3 as an estimat eon drug use in professional baseball - I got the number from coaching college baseball summer league all-star teams, and talking to several friends who are Major League Baseball scouts, and knowing about the physical effects of steroids on the human body and looking at players over a period of time and seeing bodies change. Where do you get you information from? The media? Yerfatma? Your softball buddies? I'd be happy to continue this debate over private email Let me know and I'll post an email. otherwise; consider yourself the victor. Manny is the best player ever.

posted by sfts2 at 09:04 AM on December 13

I got the number from coaching college baseball summer league all-star teams, and talking to several friends who are Major League Baseball scouts, and knowing about the physical effects of steroids on the human body and looking at players over a period of time and seeing bodies change. So you extrapolated a figure based on your personal (anecdotal) experience? Why is that more trustworthy than the extrapolations in the press from much larger samples? My point consistently is that it is impossible, even with stats to compare players, now, it may be the best thing we have to do so, which is why its used, but its virtually meaningless, IN MY VIEW. You lost me. Do you mean impossible to compare players across eras or are you suggesting it's not possible to say a .400 hitter is better than a .100 hitter? There has been very little baseball related knowledge that does not relate to statistics in any of your posts. This characteristic of arm chair bound 'fans', not those with any real insight. This is where the two schools of thought diverge. I'm sorry if you think our geeky enjoyment of stats isn't rooted in the same love of the game you have. The whole idea of statistical analysis is to provide a better language to discuss players and their abilities, not to abstract the game away into columns of numbers.

posted by yerfatma at 10:00 AM on December 13

yerfatma, I checked back to see if grum had posted an email address. I've said I am not going to engage here anymore, happy to continue in private. Let me replace the paragraph in question above, because a couple of typos made it suck. 'Re stats in general: My point consistently is that it is impossible, even with stats to compare players across eras, now, it may be the best thing we have to do so, which is why its used, but its virtually meaningless, IN MY VIEW. You seem to want to always take the discussion down a statistical road and you make quite strange conclusions and present them as fact, when I dispute YOUR ENTIRE PREMISE. That statistics, while a useful guide, in the hands of someone who knows the game on the field, can not be used to compare players across eras. Its mental masturbation, and it forms the basis of all of your energy regarding baseball, it seems to me.

posted by sfts2 at 11:28 AM on December 13

Posted an email address for what? His is on his member page (you can get there by clicking on his name under any of his comments).

posted by yerfatma at 11:56 AM on December 13

For example, where have I insulted you? I'm pretty sure that these statements weren't said as compliments:

  • You must be one of the 6 people left in the world that think small parks and watered down pitching and performance enhancing drugs have not inflated hitting stats.
  • I think you're getting angry and its affecting your comprehension.
That statistics, while a useful guide, in the hands of someone who knows the game on the field, can not be used to compare players across eras. Its mental masturbation, and it forms the basis of all of your energy regarding baseball, it seems to me. Is that because stats don't provide all the information you want to know? Or is it because you believe that different eras are too dissimilar to possibly be comparable in the first place? Wouldn't this also affect the ability for general managers to properly judge players from the minor leagues or college ball? I mean, the game being played at the college level might be too different to compare it to the major league level (aluminum bats being one major difference). Yet, somehow, people still use statistics to make judgement calls about players in the minors/college and predict how they are going to perform in the majors. Just because you can't see how formulas or algorithms are used to make the comparisons across eras, doesn't mean that it is "mental masturbation". There are people out there, with more math degrees than I have, and with more knowledge about baseball than you have, that make a living creating and refining this sort of information for major league baseball teams today. I'd love to see their reaction when you confront them (and their GM bosses) with the statement that it's "mental masturbation". I checked back to see if grum had posted an email address. My email address has always been available on my user page, which you can see by simply clicking my username. I don't post my email address to open pages like this because I don't want it scraped and collected by spam-bots. If you want to continue this conversation, I'm fine with that. However, as you stated before, we can both be happy with the knowledge that we like our own systems of player evaluation, and accept that the other guy's system has some merit too. I don't think we'll be swaying the other person to "convert" to the opposing point of view, so it's probably not worth our time or effort. Besides, I think these kinds of conversations are more interesting in a public forum because it gives other people a chance to hear both sides of the discussion and improve their understanding of the topic at hand. I'll admit that I learned from your mention of the Offensive Production Statistics, as I was unsure of the rating system scouts used. I knew they had SOME system, but wasn't sure of the name or values used.

posted by grum@work at 12:08 PM on December 13

Well, I'm fine with quasi-public, (I'm sure most thinking readers have tuned out) I just don't want to engage in public arguments and it seemed like we were heading to to that realm, and I don't want to participate if we can't a) quote accurately or b) be civil. I did not consider my comments to be personal insults and I still don't, and seeing as how I've even already apologized if you took them that way, I am not sure whats to be gained by continuing that line... Back to your latest, I believe three main things about stats in general. First, that they are woefully inadequate to make reasonable real-world baseball decisions about players. Such as those that a real GM is going to make. (Ramirez for Tejada straight up) They neither provide much of the info that I would like to know, and often are quite misleading. They are better than nothing, upon that I will agree. But you are making the mistake that because I do not agree with you, that I 'can't see.' I've read many of the books and perused the websites. For a time, I believed as you seem to. But I've rejected it. Do you really think that hours poring over stats as a layman provide the insight into the game that spending 5 or 6 hours a day on weekends and several hours a weeknight in season for 15 years on a baseball field does? And I'm not even a very experienced baseball guy, not saying that, and I do believe you can know the game too. Also, I might add editorially, that I work for a company that statistcally analyses investments, so I have familiarity with statistical methods, and their shortcomings. Not an expert, but not a noobie either. Second, stats across eras or comparing players across eras is not meaningful (mental masturbation). I know many people like to engage in it, its fun, but meaningless. There is no bigger waste of time than to argue Koufax vs Clemens. This of course, is just my opinion. Some may think its fun, and thats fine. But don't confuse it with anything real. You'll note that my mental masturbation comment is not applied to evaluating contemporary talent. Stats definitely have a strong place in that realm, if balanced with real-world experience and baseball knowledge. However, as I pointed out before, if you knew how they kept the book at most levels of baseball (HS, college, summer ball, AAU) upon which MANY draft day decisions are based, you would have much less confidence in them. #1 draft picks are often the statistical leaders, how many make a career on a baseball field? The object of Billy Beane's wet dreams in MoneyBall was Kevin Youkilis, the journeyman 1b that I proposed the two-headed Sox ship to CrabTown for Tejada. Thirdly, and perhaps off-topic, but please forgive my rant. I have only recently started posting on this board after lurking for some time. Honestly, I find most of the commentary just parrots back what I hear on ESPN or WFAN here in the NYC area. I listen and laugh sometimes. I mean, its not like I don't listen to talk radio or watch SportsCenter. I just find its coverage to be mostly uninteresting, because it doesn't relate to the game. It relates to salaries, stats, player moves etc. These aspects are the least important and least interesting aspects of the world of sport to me. I saw Jeremy Schaap lead his recent piece on ethics predicating his main argument on whether catchers framing pitches was a lapse in ethics, additional talking heads pontificating about how it was. Anyone in baseball knows that framing is to get strikes called strikes, and not ball called strikes, because every ump worth his salt will hand you your ass if you try to show him up like that. Small thing for sure, but symptomatic of the lack of true understanding most of the pundits have. Fox's Series coverage, many shots of pitchers faces, virtually none of fielders positioning before the pitch. Symptomatic. ESPN loves TO, most sports fans love TO, oooops its better to excoriate TO, wow... surprise... fans everywhere hate him. So much more fun to actually think, and have a position. I've hated TO since he laid on the Star in Dallas. I hate that showboating crap, but thats just me. Sports is entertainment, I guess, but its not entertaining to me. I'd rather drive 2 hours to see a JC Fall ball game than watch most pro sports. If I won the lottery tomorrow I'd buy a field and start a baseball team for disadvantaged 13 year olds, with no problem spending most of my spring, summer and fall days on it. To me, that is the lens through which I choose to view baseball, not the media manufactured one. Now, I believe that you are a thinking man. I'm just trying to get you to acknowledge that numbers on paper are not batspeed, or late movement, or anticipation of the outfielder based upon the count and pitch thrown and location. They don't capture Manny loafing out of the box on a lazy fly ball thats dropped but could have been a double, or his 9 year old arm slot on lazy throws back to the infield. Bottom line: Stats can help, Theo Epstein proved that. Stats, plus Pedro, Shilling, Ortiz, and yes Ramirez can win you a World Championship.

posted by sfts2 at 03:19 PM on December 13

I'm just trying to get you to acknowledge that numbers on paper are not . . . This is where The Great Divergence occurs. Because all of those things are in the numbers somewhere. The fact no stat perfectly captures those things does not mean the pursuit of a statistic that does is mental masturbation. I cannot reconcile your attempt at claiming some affinity with statistical methods to your suggestion stats cannot be used to compare things across eras. I would posit there is a world of real statistical analysis beyond what you are currently familiar with (I don't mean that in the snotty way it sounds); every player plays during a game that happens during a season in a league. This provides context. The context can be used to normalize things within the current season (e.g., using park effects to compare a pitcher who plays half his games in Chavez Ravine vs. one who plays half his games in Coors Field) and they can be used to normalize across eras by adjusting raw performance measures like HR, BA, etc. to compensate for the time they occured (Dead Ball era, current offensive explosion era, etc.). There are a lot of interesting attempts out there, but I wouldn't pretend for a second they are interesting to everyone and I do realize it's kind of weird when people begin to see the game as just an engine that pumps out numbers. The game still comes first. Sports is entertainment, I guess, but its not entertaining to me. No, I think plenty of people on this site and across the country would agree with you that the things we like about sports are rapidly diverging from what ESPN, Fox, et al are providing. I like to think this site, on its better days, makes up a little for the fact ESPN isn't Ron Jaworski football analysis 23.5 hours a day and TO 0.5 minutes a week.

posted by yerfatma at 06:36 PM on December 13

Here's a link I posted a while back that covers the same territory: 2 scouts, 2 geeks, 1 discussion.

posted by yerfatma at 07:15 PM on December 13

Er, Yerfatma, I only read the first 10 quotes or so in this, I'll read it more tomorrow because it looks really interesting, it also looks like it says pretty much what I was saying. What's your take on it? I am also not so confident that everyone agrees with you and I...obviously ESPN (which I do like for the most part, funny and highlights, not the pundits) is going to try to cater to what people want. If it was 70% garbage (scandal, salary, gossip, stats) and 30% discussion on the actual game, that would be one thing, but its 98% garbage and 2% interesting. The new football thing 'Playmaking made easy' while lame in general is at least an attempt to talk about the game, and there should be more stuff like this.. Checkout the The 6th Tool link posted today. While I haven't read it yet in any detail it looks pretty interesting to me. Lastly, just got back from the Rangers game (not a big pro hockey fan, my kids played for awhile) and saw Peter Prucha score two goals. I heard about Sydney Crosby, but this guy has outscored him this season, but I have not heard much about him. (stats!) That was sort of cool.

posted by sfts2 at 10:30 PM on December 13

obviously ESPN . . . is going to try to cater to what people want. I know what you're saying and you're probably right about their intentions, but what if they're not? I've started to think about it that way in terms of ESPN and a lot of other media outlets. Is it out of the question someone is sitting back thinking, "We'll tell them what they want" a la William Randolph Hearst? I find it difficult to believe anyone outside the Illadelphia city limits wanted that much TO coverage. He's not even playing in a pro sport for the rest of the year yet his birthday party can be the lede on Sports Center. I guess I don't believe people are the sheep mass media thinks they are. Frontline just repeated this episode last night. It's available online at the link and it's an interesting look behind the curtain of marketing.

posted by yerfatma at 06:34 AM on December 14

I'm sure your're right about the TO type coverage, and it probably isn't so much the fact that its TO, but more like just appealing to everyone's basest instincts. Like watching the car wreck as you drive past, who wants to hear about 'blocking techniques' or 'pitch framing' (like I do) when you can hear the latest juicy gossip, boat sex scandal, etc. Its just the tabloidization of media and appealling to the lowest common denominator. I don't even think its cultural, its almost more hard-wired. I mean, even I will watch the scandal story rather than something else, if I can't change the channel - like two TVs in a bar. It takes almost an act of will and reason to do so, my gut is telling me to see if I might get a glimpse of Nicolette Sheridan's nipple, I guess. I do think I'm right about the intentions, and I am sure that they study this stuff intensely, but I do not think that they execute theier intensions with calculated precision. Its more like the Programming Director just makes calls on what stories run on any day based upon their experience. 'Uhhh... lets see we can run the OTL rerun on the handicapped kid who scored a touchdown or dissect in detail the group sex habits of the Vikings...lemme think here...ok, lets go with the Vikings.' I mean, they are human, they're influcenced by the media as well.

posted by sfts2 at 11:03 AM on December 14

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.