Around the Bend They Come

Or (Why You Can't Believe What The Papers Tell You). Word comes out that Bruce Bochy received permission the other day to interview for other jobs and immediately he moves to the top of the Cubs wish list because Teflon Jim has some sort of supposed baseball crush on him. That certainly sounded reasonable enough until you read that Hendry is not even certain he'll ask the Padres for permission to speak to Bochy. Then word comes out that Lou Piniella takes himself out of the running of the Giants job and Peter Gammons reports that the Cubs and Piniella could start negotiations on a new contract as soon as Monday, while the locals already are prepared to name Piniella the 48th manager of the Cubs by the end of the NLCS. The story does not end though as this San Diego paper has this doozy:
Cubs GM Jim Hendry said Thursday he was expecting to meet with Bochy soon, but according to Chicago sources, he shifted yesterday after being told by upper management he can't go with Bochy because Piniella and Girardi, a former Cub, resonate more with the team's fan base.
Of course what the hell does a "Chicago source" mean? For all we know it's Mike North just trying to keep up appearances that the Trib must meddle in all baseball affairs. Of course, it also sounds completely reasonable on another level. If this Piniella rumors are true, Teflon Jim has done it again. He's going to go have one of the shiniest race cars on the lot, and he'll put the most popular drivers in the driver's seat. This will distract the media and fans from realizing that the engine running it is no better than what you'll find in your lawnmower.
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Comments

Rob,

The "Chicago source" is probably Deluca as he said the same thing in that ST story today.

In spite of Trib and Suntimes writers' shilling for Piniella--because he likes to share his thoughts with writers or whoever's in the room at the moment--I'm still confident that Jim Hendry will follow the rule that says you hire the guy least likely to open a restaurant.

If Piniella does get the job, where on the north side do you think they'll put up the first "Sweet Lou's"?

Piniella would be the latest in a series of washed-up blowhards who came to Chicago and took the town--or at least the sports pages--by storm. Durocher, Ditka, Harry Caray. Okay, maybe Durocher didn't have a restaurant, but he should have. I can picture him going from booth to booth, reminiscing, shmoozing, repeating these words endlessly: "That Mays--he was some kinda ballplayer!"

If Lou brings us A-Rod, I'll eat at his damn restaurant--twice a week!

Does Fox not want us to watch the playoffs? You put Eric Byrnes and A.J. Pierzynski in studio and then Byrnes has to gush that he hates A.J. but he wants him on his team. blah...

Where's my mute button?

Yeah, I guess it's possible that the San Diego paper is just citing the Sun-Times article, but say Chicago paper instead of Chicago source. Why you got to be ambigous?

VIRGINIA PHIL; At 61 and a bona fide track record of success (other than the fart in Tamps Bay - which ain't Chicago), you should be lucky enough to be this washed-up and a blowhard like Lou. What will they say about your achievements at 61?

And, being in VIRGINIA, you shouldn't be throwing too many stones.

I agree, Rob. I said it a couple of days ago and I'll say it again. Easier and way cheaper to overpay for a manager that makes a big splash with the fans and creates the illusion that the times they are a changin', than to overpay and bring in Zito, Schmidt, Soriano or Lee.

Managers like players have a peak peformance--it may be a longer climb to the peak and the peak may not fall off as fast as a player--but a peak nonetheless.

Pinella has peaked...and I would guess leaving the managing aspect of the game increases the peak greatly...

It isn't just what you know...it's keeping up the intensity--it's being physically ready to battle the players, the umpires, the media day in and out all season long...AND during the offseason. I just don't know if Pinella is the guy we are after. I think he's past his prime as a manager.

DeLUCA on WGN NOW Talkin' about his article. Tune in...

You can cross off Steve Lyons from Piniella's staff:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061014/ap_on_sp_...

Rob,

I do not know the SDUT would be vague with their sourcing its just bad journalism. About Byrnes Fox needs to tell him to stop acting like Jason Bateman in Dodgeball.

"And, being in VIRGINIA, you shouldn't be throwing too many stones."

What the hell does that mean?

I agree about Lou though. Way to good of a track record to write him off simply as a blowhard.

I think he's past his prime as a manager.

Would you have said the same thing about Leyland?

Not that I really like Leyland all that much, but the sutuations seem similar.

It's not like I'm even against Piniella, you certainly can't argue they're cheaping out or that Hendry or Co. isn't interested in winning. Piniella isn't going to take this job unless he feels the Cubs can win. At the very least, he'll bring a different temperament to the team which it sorely needed after four years.

I'll be very intrigued what kind of deal he'll get if they do hire him.

And now that I'm hearing him in the booth, I don't care who hires him, but get him the hell out of the booth whatever it costs.

The general broadcaster's sentiment I've heard which seems logical is: Pienella=more vets and spending cash NOW for FA's let's win-it-all and we really are going for it.
Girardi=more emphasis/skills on handling youth/pitchers. Maybe not the right choice for the shorter term - maybe yes/maybe no. More "intangibles".

"Piniella isn't going to take this job unless he feels the Cubs can win."

Um, why did he take the Devil Rays job, then? Sure, it was his hometown, but I don't think anyone likes to lose on an everyday basis, not even in their hometown.

Um, why did he take the Devil Rays job, then? Sure, it was his hometown, but I don't think anyone likes to lose on an everyday basis, not even in their hometown.

Um, isn't that what I was saying? He's not taking the Cubs job just so he can travel seven months of the year and get a paycheck.

I'm sure he took the Drays job cause he thought he could win there, even if it would have taken a little longer. Obviously they weren't winning and he quit.

CARLOS: While I can't read people's minds, if you had a job that required you to be on the road 50% of the time, and another company recruited you hard, offered you alot of money for three years, and it would only take you five minutes to get to work for that 50%, what would you do?

If you compare his Tampa team's talent, you'll see that there is a huge difference between what he was given in Tampa, and what he had with Seattle, the Reds, et. al.

Don't forget, this still isn't a done deal until the contract is signed!

Joe could still be alive for the gig...

Carlos -- Pinella went home to Tampa Bay to be near his ill mother. Plus, the D-Rays promised Lou that they were positioned to build a winning ball club. Obviously, that never happened.

I've got to believe that if Pinella takes the Cubs job, he's going to have to have some assurances from Hendry/McDonough that they are committed to winning, committed to spending some money, and committed to doing it now. Otherwise, I don't think he'd agree to take the job.

I LOVE THE CUB REPORTER-SPECULATOR!

your hurting my feelings, E-man.

I have no probles with either pinella or girardi. I think we need to sign zito, scmidt then either soriano or lee. play murton if we sign soriano play pie if we sign lee. z, schmidt, zito, hill and whoever sounds very solid and with an upgrade in offense we could contend immediately. put prior and wood in the pen ad things are looking much better. ifjimbo is serious about winning he needs to do what the mets did a couple years ago. sign all the good fa's

SORRY ROB G! can I PLEASE take it back?

Hendry is almost in a no lose situation. Whether he hires Pinella or Girardi, the vast majority of Cubs fans will be happy (or at least content). Girardi is the new guard who could come in and build long-term success. Pinella is a win-right-now kind of manager who holds the promise of turning things around right away. Either way, it's all good. But Hendry is threatening to screw up this advantageous situation he finds himself in by lusting after Bruce Bochy. I don't understand this man crush Hendry has for the big headed one, but he'd better get over it before he screws up his first big decision of the off-season.

DID you know, Steve Lyons was fired? http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/playoffs2006/ne...

Just learned, myself! Racially insensitive Psycho-man.

Also, I didn't know Lou is part Hispanic and speaks spanish fluently.

http://cmdr-scott.blogspot.com/2005/06/lou-pi...

interesting article on Piniella, right around when he quit the Drays.

I want one more chance to manage a club that can go to the World Series. Here or elsewhere."

and...

Contrasting the Mariners and Rays, Piniella told SI, "In Seattle we had smart owners, from Microsoft and Boeing, and we'd meet regularly and talk about what we needed to do to win and how our payroll should grow."

poor Lou don't know the Trib way....

pretty damn funny they replace Lyons with Mota..

but I don't get what was insulting? oh well, getting Lyons off the air really needs no explanation.

What CUBS team has something in common with Sweet Lou?

1906 Cubs, 116 Wins

1996 Mariners, 116 Wins

I was wondering if there might be a connection.

If the Cubs don't get Schmidt, Zito or Matsuzaka this off-season, who would be the next logical candidates? I've spent so much time thinking about the top three pitching prospects that I'm really not sure who the next best guys are.

Sweet Lou: Many have been discussed here. I believe that durability will be as important in the decisions as W-L.

But, here are many the TCR posters mentioned: Gil Meche, Freddie G., Vasquez, Jason Marquis, Tony Armas, Jr., Dontrelle Willis, Jamie Moyer, Tim Wakefield, Bautista...

The Cubs do not really have many players who would be of much value in a trade. So, they'll try to do most of the acquisitions thru FA. But, the pickings are thin there.

Well I hope with Lou they are going to make some major moves (signings and trades) or they are going to have one mean drunken curmodgeon on their hands right away.

I put in the other post this will all be worth it if at some point in ST he wrestles Prior to the ground and screams at him "to act like a man!"

I put in the other post this will all be worth it if at some point in ST he wrestles Prior to the ground and screams at him "to act like a man!"

haha

Does it involve him being dressed in a tux on his daughter's wedding? cause that's what I envision.

Beyond the Big 3 I'd say the next tier of FA's would be:
Adam Eaton
Mark Buehrle (team option though)
Andy Pettite
Mark Mulder (out with shoulder surgery)
Ted Lilly
Randy Wolf
Vicente Padilla
Mike Mussina
John Thomson

Third Tier
Jamie Moyer
Greg Maddux
Brad Radke (not so sure about retirement anymore)
Gil Meche
Jeff Suppan
Jason Marquis
Tony Armas Jr.
Miguel Batista
Tomo Ohka
Chan-Ho Park
Mark Redman

So expect Adam Eaton and Mark Redman as Cubbies next year. :)

Personally you make big runs at Schmidt or Matsuzaka and bring back Maddux (no more than $4 mil), but that's me. Zito vs. Hill doesn't seem like all that much of an upgrade for the cost. Of course Hill would be some very tasty trade bait.

Here's FA Pitcher lists from MLB Trade (ahem) Rumors:

Want someone who's plain tough to hit?  Good luck with that.
With BABIPs adjusted to the league average, here are the best free agent pitchers in hits per nine innings. The following group allowed fewer than a hit per inning.

"Third Tier
Jamie Moyer
Greg Maddux
Brad Radke (not so sure about retirement anymore)
Gil Meche
Jeff Suppan
..."

I think you might have Suppan in the wrong tier.
Look at his #'s the past 2 years. He'd have been the #2 guy on very many teams. He moves as slow as Clement at times, but he is a quality #3-#4 guy.

Seeing John McD is now the PreZ., look for Maddux or Moyer to return!

Perhaps he might try to sign Fergie Jenkins, too, as a #6.

that's fine, Suppan can be in the 2nd tier. He's still remarkably young for a guy who seems like he's been in the league forever. He'll be 32 next year. Looks like he's settled into the league average, stays healthy mode. Doesn't do anything remarkable, low K totals, mid to high walk totals, middle of the road HR totals, seems to keep the ball on the ground.

Certainly better than I thought though, thanks.

I think he's past his prime as a manager.

Two words: Jack McKeon.

I don't believe in management prime. Team skill, team chemistry and a whole lot of luck all factor in bigger than the manager anyway.

NOHIT: Two words: Jack McKeon

And, several more - Sparky Anderson, Whitey Herzog, Jim Leyland

I agree that TribCo. management is gonna need to pull out all the stops to make this hire work. It has rarely happened in my lifetime and I've been a Cub fan for 41 years.

Damn, what a finish.

Go Tigers!

The Tigers are a great story. I can only hope that the story is repeated in 2007 with the Cubs.

Neifi! is going to the World Series.

My "um" wasn't supposed to be sarcastic, Rob.

Sorry Billy,

Maybe you'll get lucky next time.

BULLSHIT.

His teams are 1 and six in post season series. It ain't luck at that point.

Keep beating that dead horse Chad, you look dumber and dumber each time railing against Oakland for what they have done as an organization.

I guess if you like acting and looking stupid thats you choice.

Chad,

Honestly curious: do you feel the same way about the Yankees?

Well, 1 for 6 is not the greatest post-season record, is it?

I'll give you that indeed, at least the A's have gotten the chance.

But it appears as if a balance between SABR and well-informed OLD-SCHOOL has the greatest merit.

The Cubs hopes of obtaining Alex Rodriguez in the off-season just went down the drain. It appears that ARod has a future in the beverage distribution industry. Damn it...

Chad:
His teams are 1 and six in post season series. It ain't luck at that point.

Would you care to provide an example of a GM who you think has figured out the formula to consistently win in both the regular and post season (i.e. Chadball)?

Chadball?!!

HAHAHA!!

"Piniella could be Cubs' skipper choice"

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/a...

Nothing new - it is a summary of De Luca's Sun Times article this early a.m.

wow....you watch the tigers and become envious. that looks like so much fun. damn, i hope we get there some day.

"Piniella would be the latest in a series of washed-up blowhards who came to Chicago and took the town--or at least the sports pages--by storm. Durocher, Ditka, Harry Caray."

How the hell could you call Dikta washed up? Da Coach was hardly a grizzled vet when he took the Bears reign. Plus, I suspect he could still kick the ass of somebody's whose name is Virginia Phil.

The Mets are in trouble.

STEVEM: LOL!!!

PRESTON FREAKIN' WILSON!!!

Are you KIDDING ME?!!

Let me get this straight - NEIFI is in the World Series. With an OBP of .-025

Preston Wilson - strikout master - might get there, too?

"Would you care to provide an example of a GM who you think has figured out the formula to consistently win in both the regular and post season (i.e. Chadball)?

The answer is...

THERE IS NO MAGIC FORMULA

I'm come here day after day and endure you fucking stupid posts WHINING and COMPLAINING about OBP and OPS and why can't the Cubs be more like the A's and how Neifi is so bad cause he has bad OBP and how Dusty Baker is stupid cause he doesn't look at OBP and Cesar Iztuis this and Tony Womack that.

And its such BULLSHIT.

You can make fun of me all you want and talk about how 'dumb' I look but in truth, you all look dumb. You really do. Cause the amount of baseball knowledge here is laughable sometimes. You show no perspective and no respect for a game that is AT minimum 40 yeas older than any reader here.

There is a reason you bat Juan Pierre types first and there is a reason why you bat the pitcher last. Its baseball. And there is no stat that actually matters other than WINS. And if you don't get enough of them to win the World Series then you didn't do anything.

So keep your Moneyball and keep your OBP. Keep your Kevin Youkilis' and your Nick Swishers. I'll be just fine without them.

Seriously what a weak NLCS? Both the Cards and Mets have no pitching at all and one of them will make it to the WS for the right to lose to the Tigers. It makes me sick to think we were the worst team in the NL, with the team we had (on paper) we should be at least competitive.

I'm just not excited about the manager situation...either Giardi or Pinella will be great. I'm happier with Giardi becasue he gets how we feel as fans...he's been through it. I think Hendry has done a good job..he will have hired the sexy pick both times...not neces. the best though.

Now what are we going to do to get better to be in this weak NL next year.

"There is a reason you bat Juan Pierre types first.."

The reason you bat Pierre first is you don't know what you're doing but nobody ever lost his job batting Pierre first so ...

Oops!

I'm come here day after day and endure you fucking stupid posts WHINING and COMPLAINING about OBP and OPS and why can't the Cubs be more like the A's and how Neifi is so bad cause he has bad OBP and how Dusty Baker is stupid cause he doesn't look at OBP and Cesar Iztuis this and Tony Womack that.

And its such BULLSHIT.

Gee Chad that sounds like a whole lot of whining and complaining on your part.

You can make fun of me all you want and talk about how 'dumb' I look but in truth, you all look dumb. You really do. Cause the amount of baseball knowledge here is laughable sometimes.

Fine, your a whiney ass little bitch who complains at the drop of a dime when no one agrees with your opinion. And when they don't you go off on philosophical rants in which you explain your a GOD in baseball knowledge and the rest of us should just shut up and respect it.

Fuck you and your opinions. You haven't had a coherent thought in over a year. And if you don't like that? Shove it up your ass where every single one of your rants belongs.

Chad: And there is no stat that actually matters other than WINS.

People do put too much stock into stats, I blame fantasy sports. I highly doubt stats play much of a role in baseball decisions. That's why scouts show up to games with their radar guns instead of just google'ing players stats.

Mike, you are an angry man. I've known you through the internet for some time and you really have a problem with rage. I'm glad this is semi-annoymous as I know you own a gun and I'd fear that you might shoot me if knew where I live.

I wish you well and I hope in the future you decide to just skip reading my posts as they seem pretty worthless to you and why bother getting your blood boiling any more than it already does.

" with the team we had (on paper) we should be at least competitive." - Spongebob

Really? You mean the piece of paper with the names Prior and Wood on it? Because without them the Cubs never stood a chance. Marshall? Marmol? Mateo? Guzman? A couple of these guys may end up being wonderful pitchers but this season the Cubs had zero chance to compete with them starting. Add to that Lee's injury and Ryan Dempster being healthy and it was a done deal. The Cubs have earned the right to be called the worst team in the worst division in the worst league in baseball.

"Sorry Billy,

Maybe you'll get lucky next time.

BULLSHIT.

His teams are 1 and six in post season series. It ain't luck at that point."

Nothing like a Cub fan giving the GM of a team with barely two-thirds the payroll of the Cubs shit for failing in the post season five out of SIX times. That's right. A GM who has gotten his team to the post season more times in the past ten yeats than the Cubs have been in the post season since the year the Spanish Civil War ended is a failure. Good Lord. I'm not even a huge Beane fan but that's just sad.

And in that span of playoff appearances 5 for the A's and 1 for the Cubs, they have the same to show for it.

"And in that span of playoff appearances 5 for the A's and 1 for the Cubs, they have the same to show for it."

The A's don't fly division banners at their park?

from the Sun-Times:

Pitching coach Rick Kranitz -- a longtime member of the Cubs organization who worked with Girardi last season in Florida and would have accompanied the manager to Chicago -- agreed to a one-year deal Saturday to return to the Marlins and work under new manager Fredi Gonzalez.

Mike, you are an angry man. I've known you through the internet for some time and you really have a problem with rage.

Pot, Kettle, meet Chad.

A quote from Rick Morrisey's column today:

"What about Joe Girardi, proud son of Peoria, Northwestern graduate and favorite candidate of many a Cubs fan? He needs seasoning, and there's no reason for the Cubs to be the team to supply the salt and pepper. Let somebody else do it. Ninety-eight years removed from a World Series title, there's too much that needs to be done right now, and a manager with one season of experience is a risk."

"Statement: Piniella is the kind of manager who, through sheer force of will, can lift a team.

Question: Assuming you're not a family member, would you be able to pick Bochy out of a lineup? Didn't think so.

A better question: Do the Cubs honestly believe they can sell Bochy to a fan base that needs Red Bull intravenously just to stay awake these days?"

The passions of Cubs fans, no matter how misdirected, are amazing. Can you imagine Padres or Brewers or Mariners fans getting this worked up over a game? I doubt it.

There is no way anyone can win this argument. While it is true that stats are overly relied on, they are the only objective tool we have available to measure the performance of a baseball player. And though it is true that scouts, managers and GMs sometimes make decisions for the oddest of reasons (or sometimes for no discernible reason at all), baseball remains a game where wins and loses can be decided on nothing more than a hunch.

It's likely that no one will ever be able to simplify baseball down to an exact science of statistics. But even the most ardent old school baseball man would be foolish to totally discount the stats that are available. They are a valuable tool, but by no means do they tell the whole story. There will always be intangibles in baseball that can not be quantified, but which will always be an integral part of the game.

Anyone else think Eric Byrnes looks a little like Paul Westerberg?

Who do you think might be part of Lou's staff if he does end up taking this job? Pitching Coach? Hitting Coach?

I hope Pinella has had a long talk with Hendry "Listen Jim, I had your job before with an even bigger team than the Cubs...I've had your job--and I know what players it takes to win....no more 4 year 21 million dollar deals to the Jock Jones of the world.....payroll isn't the key....it's the player on the end of the payroll that is the key Jim....Jim you see the link here? See what I'm sayin' Jimmie? Don't impress me with 100 million dollar payroll...impress me with a real team Jimmie...a real team... If you can do that Jimmie--I'm your man--if you can't Jimmie, my reputation as a winner will be hindered by a lackluster product put on the field by the GM...and frankly Jimmie I just can't risk that. You with me Jimmie?"

Above all else, we need a manager who can evaluate talent. No one else in the organization seems capable of doing it.

Mikey, Mikey, Mikey, what are we going to do with you? Your rants aren't exactly music to our ears, but rather a deep, penetrating and persistent pain in our collective rears!

Keep up the noise, you rotten gas bag!

Mike, you are an angry man. I've known you through the internet for some time and you really have a problem with rage. I'm glad this is semi-annoymous as I know you own a gun and I'd fear that you might shoot me if knew where I live.

I wish you well and I hope in the future you decide to just skip reading my posts as they seem pretty worthless to you and why bother getting your blood boiling any more than it already does.

Maybe you should take your own advice Chad as you have been going off on people pretty regularly because they don't bend to your will.

I have pretty much stayed out of your shit, but that post was it when you were complaing about other people whining and complaing. That is all you ever do in your posts lately, whine and cry and bitch and moan.

It sure didn't help when you were stating how superior your baseball knowledge was compared to everyone else. I bet if we took a running poll on TCR most people would say your baseball knowledge is a freaking joke.

Before you start handing out advice, start following it first.

no good will come of this Chad, Mike C. and others, I plead with you to go watch some football and just forget about it.

Piniella leans heavily on statistics, using them to put the odds as much in his favor as possible. He mixes and matches extremely well and isn't someone who manages on hunches or necessarily by the book. He will take calculated risks, wants his coaches and players to be aggressive, but not reckless, on the bases and is a stickler on fundamentals. He has only a few rules, and some of them are bendable. Piniella gives more slack to veterans than he does young players.

http://tinyurl.com/ucxmx

from an article when Piniella was hired by the DRays fwiw

when Piniella was hired, Lee Elia became his hitting coach, yeah that Lee Elia. Chris Bosio his pitching coach, John McLaren his bench coach and Matt Sinatro his bullpen coach.

that's what I could find..the crony system strikes again as all were coaches with him in Seattle.

http://tinyurl.com/ybalot

Adam Dunn trade talk

cue Crunch. :)

I don't know much about Lou beyond that he gets fired up alot, and isn't afraid to get in his players faces and demand excellence. But hey if he is a stickler for fundamentals he is light years ahead of Dusty.

Dusty just thinks fundamentals are these magical things that appear if you don't practice them.

FROM ESPN 1000's Bruce Levine:

He's reporting that the Piniella contract should be in place by Tuesday sometime.

Of all of the baseball reporters, he is the least full of shit in my opinion. Well, maybe he an Gammons - but Bruce is our local guy and has established great relationships.

Oh - apparently 3 yrs @ $3MM a yr.

We'll all see soon enough.

The Yanks would have given Piniella 3-4 years at 4-5 million.

What a steal!

ROB G: Chris Bosio quit after the 2003 season to return to Wisconsin so that he could spend more time with his family, and he was replaced by Devil Rays minor league pitching coordinator Chuck Hernandez. Ex-Cub Billy Hatcher (1st base) and Tom Foley (3rd base) were the other members of Piniella's staff in TB, in addition to John McLaren (bench), Matt Sinatro (bullpen), and Lee Elia (hitting). Elia had been a "coaching consultant" and ST field coordinator at Seattle the last year Lou was there.

McLaren and Sinatro are just about locks to be part of Piniella's Cubs coaching staff, because both were also members of Lou's staff in Seattle and apparently they go wherever Lou goes. McLaren's last baseball gig was 3rd base coach for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, so he probably would take just about any job right now. And Sinatro is apparently "between jobs." Lee Elia is currently Sam Perlozzo's bench coach in Baltimore, but it is rumored that the ex-Cub manager will not return to the Orioles in 2007.

Other coaches who served with Lou in Seattle at the end of his tenure there were John Moses (1st base), Dave Myers (3rd base), Gerald Perry (hitting), and Bryan Price (pitching), but they did not follow Lou to Tampa. Price remained the Mariners pitching coach even after Piniella left, so he would seem to have been more of an "Organizational Guy" than a "Lou Guy." Same goes for Myers (who worked for the Mariners for 25 years) and Moses (who remained in the Mariners' organization after Piniella left).

I think it's possible that Hendry might require (ask) Piniella to accept at least two "organization" guys on his staff, and if so, they might be Von Joshua (hitting) and either Mike Quade or Pat Listach (3rd base) and/or possibly Alan Dunn (pitching). And then Piniella will probably be able to choose one or two more coaches (whatever spots are left), in addition to McLaren and Sinatro. I doubt that Steve Lyons will be a candidate. Also, Piniella does not seem to care much about who his pitching coach is, because he apparently doesn't have any that follow him around when he changes jobs. (Stan Williams was Piniella's pitching coach for a while both in Cincinnati and in Seattle, but Williams is 70 years old and I doubt that he will ever return to full-time duty as an MLB pitching coach).

If Piniella were to have the opportunity to name the pitching coach and/or hitting instructor, keep in mind that Larry Rothschild served as Piniella's pitching coach in Cincinnati, and Lou's one-time Yankee teammate Chris Chambliss was recently fired as hitting instructor for the Cincinnati Reds.

BTW, note that I did not refer to McLaren and Sinatro as "cronies" or "flunkies." I am trying to be nice.

thanks AZ Phil for the further info, that was about all the research I was willing to do.

Has Gammons ever got anything right? I love the guy, sharp fella, good writer, but I think baseball management uses him to float rumors.

I don't listen much to Chicago radio but didn't Levine get in some trouble or just butchered a rumor last year. Maybe I'm thinking of something else...

There's so much Piniella chatter at the moment, it's hard to ignore. It shall be interesting if can get ownership to listen to him like he apparently got the Seattle owners too.

ROB G: I don't listen much to Chicago radio but didn't Levine get in some trouble or just butchered a rumor last year. Maybe I'm thinking of something else...

I believe you're referring to George Ofman, on WSCR, who was publicly humiliated when he reported a baseball rumor as fact.

BTW, speaking of Matt Sinatro, maybe the Cubs could institute a new tradition in 2007. Just like the Yankees play Frank's "New York, New York" over the PA after their games, maybe the Cubs could play the Chairman of the Board's "My Kind of Town (Chicago Is)" after a Cubs victory:

MY KIND OF TOWN (CHICAGO IS)
(Sammy Cahn - Jimmy Van Heusen)

"Now, this could only happen to a guy like me
And only happen in a town like this
So may I say to each of you, most gratefully
As I throw each one of you a kiss

This is my kind of town
Chicago is my kind of town
Chicago is my kind of people too
People who smile at you and

Each time I roam
Chicago is calling me home
Chicago is why I just grin like a clown
It's my kind of town.

My kind of town,
Chicago is my kind of town,
Chicago is my kind of raz-ma-taz
And it has all that jazz and

Each time I leave,
Chicago is tuggin' my sleeve
Chicago is the Wrigley Building
Chicago is the Union Stockyards
Chicago is one town that won't let you down
It's my kind of town"

I know there's a "live" version where Frank replaces "the Union Stockyards" line with "the Chicago Cubbies," so that would be the version to play.

"The Tigers are a great story. I can only hope that the story is repeated in 2007 with the Cubs."

Lou, I strongly doubt it. The Tigers of 2006 are the fruit of years of patient development. They built up a farm system that drafted and developed players for delivery to the parent club. And they patiently signed key veterans, such as I-Rod and Ordonez, to long-term contracts.

When the core of the team was in place and the front office felt that they were positioned to go to the Series, then the Tigers spent on role-players who would help to get them over the top - Kenny Rogers being one and, yes, Neifi being another.

When I-Rod signed his long-term contract with the Tigers, I remember thinking that he was nuts - and a lot of other people agreed with me at the time. Which is why I'm commenting on a blog rather than running a ball club.

One thing the Tigers did not do, though, is go on a spending spree and fling millions at whoever was in the free-agent market in a given year, hoping to "catch lightning in a bottle". They formulated a plan, husbanded their resources, and executed the plan brilliantly. I fully expect that two weeks from today, the Tigers will be 2006 MLB Champions - and my hat's off to them.

And I fully expect that Jim Hendry will spend another nine-figures worth of Cubs cash trying to buy a Series that he hasn't the wit or the patience to develop. Which is why the 2007 Cubs will be 2006 Redux, regardless of who's managing.

URBS: Well, yes and no.

The entire 2003 roster, save two players, was blown up. One is a pitcher, the other (Inge) was a catcher that was converted to 3b.

So your "patience" argument I don't entirely agree with. In the two years following, then, the almost ALL of the starting roster that you see in the Series, was acquired through trades and FA.

Don't kid yourself, success can still be bought. Its how ya spend the money.

When you look at my "Stiffs" list posted on previous threads (starting with Mabry, ending with Jody Garut) our dim-witted GM did not do his job well since 2003.

oh yeah Ofman, that was it. Go Levine!!!

"The A's don't fly division banners at their park?"

Wow. That means a ton. A ton to people who care about things like second place or giving out trophies for participating.

Hmmm you might want to add Nate Robertson and Mike Maroth to the list of players who played on the 2003 team who are still with the Tigers.

Well lets also not forget about Jamie Walker, Fernando Rodney, and Omar Infante and Craig Monroe.

I was watching Fox when Detroit won it last night and they said Inge was the last guy remaining from the 2003 team and I was like say what? It wasn't just Inge and Bonderman.

I think what's getting a lot of people on this board, Chad, is that you represent such a ridiculous position. It's as if you're a caricature of some cigar-smoking, old-school baseball guy who doesn't know what he's talking about. I agree with what you're saying to some extent, but to completely ignore something as valuable statistical analysis is lunacy. I think we can all agree there's value in getting on base and hitting for power, so let's find guys who do that well. If they can do both, then they are quite special indeed!

Also, as for the A's, let me say this as someone who knows something about their front office operation. This is a team that values statistics and scouting evenly and every person on the staff appreciates that the statistics are used to give a complete picture of a player. Scouts can find guys the stats won't, but the same is true for stats finding guys scouts won't. You need both and I think the A's are intelligent because they understand this better than most clubs. It's unfortunate the A's struggled in the LCS, but they weren't the best team. Does that mean Billy Beane sucks? Hardly.

MIKEC: Yep, I did leave Robertson and Monroe out.

But, I said starters - "...'almost ALL' of the starting roster that you see in the Series, was acquired through trades and FA." And, of course THE most important acquisition to fit in: Kenny Rogers. So in the below comparison, 6 of the 9 players in the starting lineup back up my point.

ALCS Recent Starters

AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG
Granderson, CF 5 1 2 1 0 1 1 .400
Perez, SS 4 0 0 0 0 1 0 .000
Polanco, 2B 4 1 3 0 1 1 0 .500
Ordonez, RF 5 1 1 0 0 1 4 .222
Guillen, 1B 4 1 1 0 0 2 4 .222
Rodriguez, C 3 1 0 0 1 0 1 .250
Monroe, LF 3 2 2 2 0 1 0 .286
Gomez, DH 4 1 2 4 0 0 0 .500
Inge, 3B

2004 Starters (Aug. 2004, vs. Wh Sox)

AB R H RBI BB K LOB Season Avg
A. Sanchez cf 4 1 1 1 0 0 0 .327
B. Higginson rf 3 0 1 0 1 0 0 .253
C. Guillen ss 3 0 0 1 0 1 3 .326
D. Young dh 4 0 0 0 0 1 1 .284
R. White lf 3 1 1 1 1 1 0 .272
C. Pena 1b 3 0 0 0 1 2 1 .228
E. Munson 3b 4 0 0 0 0 2 2 .218
J. Smith 2b 4 1 1 0 0 0 2 .323
B. Inge c 3 1 1 1 0 2 1 .281
Totals

#91 of 92: By Rishi
.......but to completely ignore something as valuable statistical analysis is lunacy
---

The problem with debate via this or any other blog is that we/you/I lose 70% of our ability to communicate....namely, non-verbal/non-written....words. Said another way, 70% of all communication is NOT from words....it's from body language, voice inflection, eye contact, etc.

I can't speak for Chad...but MY GUESS is he's arguing ONE end of the statistics/Sabremetrics spectrum. He's smart enough to know that you have to use statistics as SOME rationale for future projection. He argues his point consistently...unlike most of the "regular" contributors that blow in the wind just to stir up trouble..... other than AZ. Phil, of course. His is the voice of reason.

Rishi.....your post #92 sounds rationale.....balance between baseball knowledge and statistics.....there's logic there....but if we continue being that smart and Vanilla we'll not have a damn thing to talk about.

Chad....I got your back!!!! Keep arguing.....there are people on here that agree with you.

Joey--The REAL Joey-- from Iowa

See #44 above - I said the same thing yesterday.

"This is a team that values statistics and scouting evenly"

This is simply untrue about the Oakland A's. It says so straight from Billy's mouth in the book. I really doesn't put much stock in visual scouting of players.

I believe in stats. I think they are important. But, 1. you guys don't like the stats that I like and 2. you guys here seem to only care about OBP and perhaps SLG (but to much lower extent).

But I swear to God I would like for one day to see people try to talk about baseball WITHOUT using the term OBP.

And lastly, I am not convinced that anyone where would put such a huge stock in that stat if the book Moneyball never came out.

And lastly, I am not convinced that anyone where would put such a huge stock in that stat if the book Moneyball never came out.

Your lack of historical perspective on this issue is remarkable.

Wow, TCR trolls sure act fast!

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?ter...

Based on the usual tone of Chad's posts, I don't find it remarkable at all.

Agreed, Chad. It was not fair of me to say you don't care about any statistics. And yes, I can understand how infuriating on-base percentage talk can be. However, you need to trust me on one thing: I know the A's front office, if only a little and "Moneyball" is an economics book. It's clear that statistical analysis is important. If we run regressions, on-base and slugging correlate the best with run-scoring. It's true and it makes intuitive sense. That's all I'm saying.

Chad, I like your posts. Especially because you rightly didn't turn your back on Sammy--I respect that. I like this board because everybody has a lot to contribute; other baseball blogs don't seem to have nearly the baseball wisdom of this collective group of posters.

Question: Do you prefer Girardi or Piniella?

I'll take being in contention every year, and not getting to the series over the crap we've had to watch 21 of the last 25 years.

I'll also take Nick Swisher as my RF....any day of the week.

Rishi,

RBI's correlates more strongly with run scoring than OBP or SLG!

I don't really understand that definition of Chadball. Is there a Chadball team out there? What is it, like the Big Red Machine? In terms of Luck, the Big Red Machine only made it to the world series using the current baseball playoff format. Since the expanded playoff format the only team to have a really good run of what Chad describes as success is the Yankees.

The 92 win '96 team didn't do particulary well in ERA (4th) or runs scored (7th). I'd call their title Luck, and I don't think it was expected. The 1998 team, the first of the mercanary champions blungeoned the league with the best offense (including #1 OBP) and best ERA (best DIPS numbers as well). The 1999 team had the 2nd best ERA and 2nd best offense. The 87 win 2000 team was 6th in runs and ERA. They weren't a very good team.

But what has happened to them since? They still win the division but rarely even make the WS anymore. Chad, how do they get Chadball back? Maybe the Yankees, who I belive spent the most money on statistical analysis, read Moneyball and destroyed their reliance on Chadball in the process? Maybe Derek Jeter was kidnapped by aliens who sucked out his will to win following the 2000 playoffs? They lead the majors in offense this year (by 60 runs), but foolishly did it by having an OPS+ 6 percent higher than anyone else. Maybe Johnny Damon isn't fast enough anymore to bat leadoff on a Chadball team.

Maybe it's difficult to win 3 consecutive series against 3 playoff calibre opponents, no matter how good your team is? It's all so very confusing.

Sex with men dressed up as peanuts? I wonder if they can work that into 'Take Me Out to the Ball Game"

Oh yeah, I dress up as a peanut at least 3 times a week for my wife.

Rob G.: Adam Dunn trade talk

Cutting down on strikeouts and putting more emphasis on the defense would not seem to bode well for Dunn's long-term future with the Reds.

Hahahhah, brutal honesty. Of course, I wouldn't mind his 40 HR in the Cubs lineup.

Yes the Yankees are a perfect Chadball team. So is the 97 Marlins , 01 Diamondbacks and the 04 Red Sox. Add to that list this years Tigers and Mets. Maybe even the 03 Marlins.

They went out and built a winner with both homegrown talent and big ticket free agents.

That is how you play Chadball.

Oh, to Ozzie Guillen, who entered Chadball into the Urban Dictionary.

1. Thank you for putting my name into the annals of great Urban Dictionary terms like "Dirty Sanchez" and "Cleveland Steamer" I am forever in debt.

and

2. I'm not quite sure if you meant that as a barb or shot at me but if anything, it has inflated my ego to even bigger than it already is.

Thank you.

Maybe Wikipedia next?

I remember the day Jack Brickhouse would talk about "a walk is as good as a hit"....and how true that is.

I think OBP is a HUGE thing....it means you are a productive player....you get on base instead of making outs...what is so wrong with valuing this stat?

Where I differ with some sabers....is that it's my perception sabermetrics deals much more greatly with individual player stats...and doesn't deal as much with team stats....

What is the ultimate stat? Wins of a team? To me that is the biggest and most important stat. Now do teams win with individual performances?? or team performance?? I guess it's all a matter of prospective...YES each player individually performs and contributes to teams W or L's. BUT Teams have to be measured on how each of the individual players collectively perform together. THIS is the most important statistical data to me...how the players collectively perform as a team and how it relates to W or L.....

That's why I still value the RBI...Runs scored etc....still means a great deal....but I don't discount OBP, Slugging % etc....and other sabermetrics....I think the two work very well together.

"I remember the day Jack Brickhouse would talk about "a walk is as good as a hit"....and how true that is."

Totally UNTRUE.

A walk in only as good as a hit if the bases are loaded and the winning run in on third. Other than that a hit is always BETTER. Always.

WHO IS THIS! #101 of 108: By alprazolam (October 15, 2006 04:58 PM)

The Real Neal: "RBI's correlates more strongly with run scoring than OBP or SLG!"

This is sarcasm, right? By the tone of the rest of your post, it has to be. I mean, it's like saying runs scored correlates the best with run-scoring. OBP and SLG are team-independent statistics, hence their value as player evaluation tools.

I think that's all I have to say on the topic, other than the teams that seem to be winning are pitching well and hitting a lot of homers. I guess it really is that simple.

A walk in only as good as a hit if the bases are loaded and the winning run in on third. Other than that a hit is always BETTER. Always.

Bottom of the 9th...Cubs down by 2 runs.....first batter up gets a walk....that is as good as a hit....you HAVE to score 2 runs...you need a runner on base....it doesn't matter if it's a single or BB.....both are the same.

You can discount walks all you want....I suppose the question should be asked--"Is a walk better than an out?" I certainly hope you say "yes". Walks on their own certainly aren't going to win you a lot of ballgames...but walks in conjunction with other walks and hits will win you ball games....

Go look up the stats of games played this past season....tell me...which team usually wins the most games? The team who had more or less walks??

"A walk in only as good as a hit if the bases are loaded and the winning run in on third. Other than that a hit is always BETTER. Always."

So a single to lead off an inning is better than a walk to lead off an inning? Either way you have a man on first and no one out. The two are the same. The walk is as good as the hit. Not to mention the guy that walked may have made the pitcher throw a few extra pitches.

Illustrating Cubfan's point -

The Cubs were sixth in the Nl in hits last year but last in drawing walks. So they ended up next to last in runs scored. Yeah, a bases loaded base-clearing double beats a walk, but a lack of walks will kill a team's offense. It's been killing the Cub offense for years. Add to that a Cub pitching staff that walks a lot of the opposition, and you have a recipe for a 2006 style debacle.

The be ULTRA specific, the reason that a hit is better is that with a hit, an error can occur and you can get more than one base.

That is with the bases empty. WIth anyone on, the hit is obviously better.

I'd argue a 12 pitch walk is much better than a first pitch single any day....to a leadoff hitter in an inning.

wats up on the FA line?

A few days ago I read that Jacque Jones has a torn labrum. He may need to have surgery and if he does, could miss the 2007 season. Has anyone heard anything more about this?

ive heard it get metioned a couple of times

A strikeout's better than a flyout - I mean a flyout is better than a groundout - I mean a called third strike is better than a foul popout...

I know, I'm being a smart ass. This conversation has been making crack up though:)

Has anyone heard thee Ken Macha is fired and Bob Geren is the new manager rumor yet? Oakland crying and blaming act is getting weak, how bout finding a stat that says when a player performs when it counts stat?

I guess he never factors that once a ball is put in play it can also be caught for an out, or thrown to 1b for an out. Or does everytime a hitter makes contact and puts the ball in play it is automatically a hit?

If an error can occur an out can occur.

Nice flawed arguement. Big shock there.

I've seen errors on BBs before....

Runner on first...count is 3-2...runner runs to second....batter takes a walk...but catcher throws to second...misses second..ball ends up in Center field...runner advances to 3B.....

Whereas the ball could have been hit to LF or an infield hit and the runner stops at 2B...with runners on 1B and 2B...instead of 1B and 3B in my example....

Yes errors can happen even with walks....funny game this game is....there are no absolutes...(i.e. a hit is ALWAYS better than a walk unless the bases are loaded in a tie game in the bottom of the ninth)...

"Adam Dunn trade talk

cue Crunch. :)"

who the hell is adam dunn?

You know, Dunn. Thee Adam Dunn. The lumbering "RBI machine" who swats at flyballs in LF like he's trying to catch insects with a bug net.

never heard of him...

is ty howington an ace yet?

Wow, what a fun read this page is. The most nutable thing about this conversation... did I say nutable? I meant notable. The most notable thing is, wow, a lot of posters give Chad some attention (something I gather he sorely needs).

I'm a first time poster to this cute little discussion forum, so mostly I need to say that overall I got a lot out of it.

Other than that this Chad fellow is a bit of a nut.

I know the conversation has veered into a discussion (basically) about OPB but I'm more interested in the focus of the original topic, regarding Piniella becoming the new high priced manager for the Cubs.

On one hand, I'm a little leery of this choice, but I'm leery of Girardi, too, having seen him mangle his pitching staff a bit.

It's a difficult choice, but I think I'd have to go with Girardi, and hope he doesn't ask Z to pitch after a 90 minute rain delay (not sure of the exact number of minutes, but Girardi did do this with one of his starters).

I'm more interested in long term success, and not a guy who is gonna be here for no more than two years.

But as soon as I write this, I realize that, hey, why am I assuming Piniella will only be here two years? Because that's how long Hendry will be here.

Which means (I know, this is all very circuitous logic, but I'm a Cubs fan and it's what I've been taught) that ANY manager Hendry hires will be here for two years.

Which means that Girardi is not the manager of the future.

Because Hendry will not survive the next two years (and any new GM will want their own manager).

How can he? This is not Arizona or some other club that brings up good position players from the minor leagues.

Hendry's legacy is as a man who grooms pitching talent. That was his risk, his gamble, and he now has two years left to fix the mess from that gamble.

I know this is early, but I say, "Thanks, Jim. Thanks for the effort."

It really was a good gamble, it just didn't work out. Hendry put all his eggs in the pitching basket, and if he could have acquired a young position player or two more than he did, it would have worked.

One more Murton, really, and his attempt would have been a good one.

I could be wrong. Hendry may be like a lot of other people who work better under pressure than otherwise, and he may pull something out of his hat.

But I doubt it. What's gonna happen is that we Cubs fans will hear stories of Piniella throwing large objects around in the clubhouse, and Hendry will get a scouting job with the Yankees, specializing in pitching talent.

The 100th anniversary will come and go, and we'll all just carry on like we did the first hundred years.

"I guess he never factors that once a ball is put in play it can also be caught for an out, or thrown to 1b for an out. Or does everytime a hitter makes contact and puts the ball in play it is automatically a hit?

If an error can occur an out can occur.

Nice flawed arguement. Big shock there."

No I am not talking about a ball in play. I'm talking about a safe hit. A safe hit then can turn into multiple bases where as a BB won't. Sure it CAN but its far less common. So the only flawed argument there is yours. Mine is very logical and correct.

Nevertheless, Cubfan, you do bring up a situation where a BB can be advantageous but they are separate things. Sure a 12 pitch BB is better than a 1 pitch hit. But a 12 pitch hit is better than a 12 pitch BB. I'd still take a 1 pitch hit over a 4 pitch walk. And I'd take a 1 pitch home run over a 12 pitch BB.

I'd take any way of getting on base, to be honest. This team can't get on base in any of scenarios mentioned above or even any that haven't been mentioned above (HBP, swinging 3rd strike in the dirt, balk, etc).

I don't care how many pitches it'll take a 2007 Cub to get on base, or how he gets there. It'll still be an improvement.

Ooh! I can't wait for the Pinella era to begin! Enough with this mamby-pamby Dustifornia attitude. Lou can start and then we TCR posters can start to tell people how we really feel. I for one can't wait to hear what it is MikeC and Chad are passionate about.

Not that I'd question statistics on this board, but Joey from Iowa seems certain that 70% of communication is non-verbal. That number doesn't take park factor or arm length into account.

I was going to try to work Erving Goffman's "Interaction Ritual" into that joke somehow, but I failed. Trans? Some help here?

TheHendryMess:

Your post reminds me of something Rob G said a couple week ago...

Rob G: it's fun to shout the sky is falling everytime you talk about the Cubs. You'll be right far more often than you're wrong..

How true, and us optimists end up looking silly. Still somehow I think all of us here want and hope the Cubs do well next year and beyond, otherwise you wouldn't be here on this website, almost 3 weeks into the Cub's offseason trying to figure out who the next manager will be.

Welcome, brother. :)

Personally, I don't think it's all that wrong building a team around a solid pitching staff, or "putting all your eggs in the pitching basket", as you said, because I happen to think pitching wins. Tell me honestly this team wouldn't be a contender the last few years had Wood & Prior stayed healthy. If I fault Hendry with anything it is counting on those two pitchers for the last 2-3 years, but what was he supposed to do?

We'll talk in 2 years because then we'll know what Hendry is made of. You could be right, Hendry could be some jerk that can't build a good ball team, time will tell.

And BTW, if I'm Piniella, I ask for 4-5 years with an optional "out clause" if Hendry is replaced in 2 years, just in case the Cubs brass decide to bring in some shmuck to replace Hendry.

This whole discussion has brought about an interesting question in my mind: is there a way that you can accurately predict postseason success? Is there some group of traits that all successful teams in the postseason have in common? Is this something we can measure somehow?

I agree with Chad that 1 out of 6 starts to seem like it's "not luck". I disagree with pretty much everything else (like OBP--I watched enough Cubs games to be able to subjectively confirm what I think the statistical analysis shows, which is that teams that don't get on base don't score), but it does seem that the A's, for whatever reason, aren't built for postseason success.

My hypothesis (based on watching each of the last five postseason series) is that postseason success depends on strong on-field leadership that can keep the team in question focused under intense pressure. The D'Backs of '01 seemed to have it in Schilling and Johnson, The Angels the next year seemed to have it in Scioscia, The Marlins in Pudge and McKeon, and so on...

Other guesses? How could we measure this sort of thing?

Other than McDonough being a cubs lifer, is there any reason for us to expect a change in the organization's philosophy?

He is, after all, a marketing director, and let's face it, we can't be much worse than we were this year. The '06 staff gained a ton of experience. We should be able to count on at least a small number of those pitchers to benefit from '06 and make large strides toward being quality starters.

But after Zambrano and Hill the rotation is filled with question marks, and I'm not mentioning names, Kerry, Mark, Wade, or sophmores.

Run production may be a problem again, although a healthy Derrek Lee would certainly go a long way toward putting the offense on track. Preperations must also be made if we can't retain Aramis and Pierre.

Then you have the manager.

How will McDonough answer these questions? Fitzsimmons did say McD would be point man for decision making, and if its the same spend big on mediocre talent, sell product, and get small results that we've already seen from McPhail and Hendry, why should we care how McD answers these questions?

The same old, same old, we've seen hasn't worked. We didn't win squat in 2003, 2004 was painful, 2005 we hit an iceberg, and 2006 saw us sink to the bottom. Why not put a plan in place like the '03 Marlins? A plan is going to work for Detroit, too. A plan might require us to blow it up and start over, and the NL is weak, so we may still have hope.

But with patience and planning, this franchise could do it easily. But hey, keep the payroll high with average players and you'll sell tickets.

Marshall and Chad,

You guys are very good at predicting the past. If strong on-field leadership is so great, why did the Yankees get knocked out of the playoffs in the first round for two years in a row with Schilling and Jeter?

Luck or randomness is a huge part of it. Just like it's a huge part of every baseball game. Sometimes you hit a screaming liner that the 3rd basemen catches, sometimes you get a hit with a swinging bunt. The prevaling thought is that over the course of the season, those things even out, but over the course of 3-7 games, they may not.

Chad your definition of Chadball is totally worthless if it can only be applied historically.

Blow it up, blow it up. I'm tired of hearing that one. One it's not going to happen, and did the White Sox blow it up to get good in one year?
They retooled and took some heat for it. The Cubs can do the same thing. They need 4 good acquisitions to help Pinella win next year. Some poss? A big bat (Soriano) 2 Sp (Padilla/Lieber)
and a vet 2b (Loretta).

Soriano-cf
Loretta-2b
Ramirez-3b
Lee-1b
Barrett-c
Jones-rf
Murton-lf
Izturis-ss

Zambrano
Padilla
Prior
Hill
Lieber

I think they could win the NLC with this without a doubt

Okay, for clarification:

I don't think Chad wrote the definition of Chadball. And as far as I can tell, Chad isn't necessarily advocating using stats for their predictive properties. And I'm not trying to offer up some sort of fail-proof theory. The question I want to ask, since we all want to be armchair GMs:

If Billy Beane has figured out how to build a team to win in the regular season but not in the post season, what is he doing wrong? What should he have on his team that he doesn't? Is there a way to look at people who've won in the past to determine the answer to that question?

The only quote I remember from a GM on this topic is Theo Epstein's "Our defense at shortstop wasn't going to be enough to get us deep into the playoffs" reasoning for trading Nomar.

kffl is attributing a "15-20% payroll increase" report to paul sullivan.

if this is true i wonder what's happened since john mcD said just a couple weeks ago they'd be working with a payroll "near" where it was?

why did the Yankees get knocked out of the playoffs in the first round for two years in a row with Schilling and Jeter?

Schilling? Am I missing something?

LET THE YELLING IN THE DUGOUT AND ON TCR BEGIN...

both the Sun-Times and the Trib cub articles say Pinella is in. Buster Olney said the same on ESPN Radio this am.

DeLuca:
Negotiations between the Cubs and their top managerial candidate advanced so quickly Sunday, the team expects to complete talks today and introduce Lou Piniella as their new manager by Tuesday, according to team and industry sources.

LET THE TOWEL DRILLS BEGIN?:
Hiring Piniella might mean the return of pitching coach Larry Rothschild, who's not a fan favorite because he has presided over a largely ineffective and injury-prone staff the last three seasons. But Rothschild, who worked with Piniella in Cincinnati, has the respect of Hendry and the Cubs' pitching staff.

ARAM ON DECK:
Hendry's next major task is locking up Ramirez, who has the right to file for free agency after the World Series. Hendry has been working on a three- or four-year extension that would keep Ramirez off the market. Those talks, however, have been derailed by the managerial search.

''I hope to move that back to the front burner this week,'' Hendry said.

THE BOOTH:
some mention that Brenly will be back, no mention of Steve Stone.

Here's the quote:

"Hendry is expected to get a 15 to 20 percent budget increase in 2007 from higher revenue from the bleacher expansion and one of the highest-priced tickets in baseball. The Cubs will give Piniella all the resources he needs to win, because it's now or never for Hendry as well."

Link.

Looks like speculation, but if it's accurate it would put our 2007 payroll at $110-115 million.

OBP might correlate with seeing more pitches, which also might correlate with patience at the plate and hitters being able to better choose pitches that are more hittable.

Hacktastic hitters might improve their averages simply by seeing more pitches.

The best hitters usually have high OBP. Why? Because they are patient and can better choose good pitches to hit, I think.

Either that or they are being wasteful. Chad hates hitters who waste perfectly good pitches to hit. 2 inches off the plate? He could have hit it if he really TRIED!

A patient hitter is a lazy hitter, eh Chad?

Hendry's next major task is locking up Ramirez, who has the right to file for free agency after the World Series. Hendry has been working on a three- or four-year extension that would keep Ramirez off the market. Those talks, however, have been derailed by the managerial search.

That part sickens me, the man can not multi-task to save his life.

It has been one of my pet peeves with Hendry since he was hired. He will get so focused on one task he will neglect all other area's. That usually leads to him failing in his 1st task and then by time he gets around to his other options they have given him the big old middle finger and signed with other clubs. It is one of the main reasons we get stuck with rehab projects and the Neifi Perez's baseball.

Confirmation of sorts:

"The feeling in Piniella's camp is the Cubs have the resources -- with a payroll expected to jump to the $115 million range -- and some key core players, such as first baseman Derrek Lee, third baseman Aramis Ramirez, All-Star pitcher Carlos Zambrano and catcher Michael Barrett, to make a serious run in a potentially weak National League Central"

Link.

That would mean Hendry has something like $35-40m to spend this offseason.

SlamDog: Has anyone heard thee Ken Macha is fired and Bob Geren is the new manager rumor yet? Oakland crying and blaming act is getting weak, how bout finding a stat that says when a player performs when it counts stat?

They're talking like Macha is fired. Of course we don't know if that's Girardi-fired or Torre-fired.

The article makes him sound like a jerk.

lol...

When Joe Kennedy and Rich Harden were on the disabled list, [Macha] referred to them as "non-entities."

Can you imagine him on the Cubs? It's an entire 25-man roster of non-entities! His head would explode.

"Negotiations between the Cubs and their top managerial candidate advanced so quickly Sunday, the team expects to complete talks today and introduce Lou Piniella as their new manager by Tuesday, according to team and industry sources."

The press conference is tomorrow.

BTW Dallas Green:
1) The Sox didnt "blow it up to get good in one year." Of course, they finished 2004 83-79, in second place. not 66-96 and in lat place.

2) They brought in 5 new starters at 2B, RF, LF, SS, and C, made mid-season trades to acquire Contreras and Garcia, then had a new closer in 2005, but hey, that's not blowing it up, that just re-tooling?

One arguement for Pinella, just like it was for Dusty, is veteran players like playing for him. One thing I noticed about him in Seattle is that he had a hard time putting together a bullpen out there and that he tended to generally scapegoat his pitchers when things did not go right. But I believe his overall record is that of a competent major league manager (who at least has won one World Series with the 1990 Reds, a team that probably beat a better Oakland team in a short seven game series.)

Like all managers, if the team generally sucks and the organization is dysfunctional, he will not rise above it (see Tampa). As the Cubs in many ways resemble the Tampa organization in their mutual fecklessness, neither Pinella or Giardi or Bochy are like to redeem the current mess.

The other part of the thread is the useless hectoring of Chad. First, he is right, as Bill James himself showed with statistical analysis, that a single is better than a walk as far as improving a team's chances of scoring a run. But there is third possible outcome of any plate appearance that Chad does not mention, and it is called an "out," and for most hitters swinging at pitches outside their zone, that outcome is the far likelier alternative to a "walk" than "a single." And outs, particularly that third one, generally kill all chances to score a run.

For those open to arguement on this subject, I support my premise with a citation to authority, a guy name of Ted Williams who convinced me of when I read the extract of his book sometime around 1970, not Billy Bean or "Moneyball." But, then what did Ted Williams know! He never was on a team that won a world series either. For what it is worth, he said: "Get a good pitch to hit." And it turns out that not all pitches, even those in the strike zone, were good pitches for even Ted Williams to hit. Hence he drew 170 walks one season. Rather than make an out. See below:

"The Science of Hitting is his comprehensive book of wisdom and anecdote, a baseball bible that offers clear, concise, well-illustrated, fundamental information on how to hit a baseball and, just as important, how to think about hitting a baseball. Williams's first commandment is "Get a good pitch to hit," and, in one of baseball's most dramatic teaching tools--a photograph that divides his strike zone into 77 baseballs, seven wide by 11 high--Williams projects what he would hit at each pitch location, from .230 on the low-outside strike to .400 in what he called his "happy zone," the heart of the plate belt high. In 1941, that happy zone was obviously ecstatic; Williams hit .406 that year, the last to break the magic .400 barrier.

I think if you want a solid definition of Chadball you need look no further than the list of World Series Champs from 1903 to the present.

after reading that article about Macha, for the most part he sounds like a jerk, but how else is he supposed to act around guys with injuries. Like Dusty? That's exactly how you treat the situation, there not here right now, it's not my problem. What a silly complaint.

"Chad your definition of Chadball is totally worthless if it can only be applied historically."

Well Neal, newsflash, using statistics is the same thing. Stats only happened in the past. They MAY give you an idea of what will happen but it won't tell you for sure. Just as studying the winning teams of the past. Build a team like they did and you may win too.

Stats are not predictive. They only tell you what happened. And can give you a good idea of what MAY happen but never will be 100% accurate. For example, lets a take a career .250 hitter, on this day he is 0 for 3. The odds of him getting a hit become 100%? Of course not.

I heard Jim Leyland on the radio this morning talking about "Mr. Smoltz" who was the "best post season pitcher he had ever seen". Huh? What? Jim Leyland believes in clutch? Whoa! You mean that people involved in baseball know there's more to the game than stats? Crazy.

Oh and MichaelWeasleo you pretty much summed up what I believe about hitting.

And CFFIG, I think Ted Williams was a loser. Yup a loser. The ultimate ME player would would rather take a walk than risk batting average points no matter what it meant to the team or situation. I would take Babe Ruth over him any day.

I think Ted Williams was a loser. Yup a loser. The ultimate ME player would would rather take a walk than risk batting average points no matter what it meant to the team or situation. I would take Babe Ruth over him any day.

Nice. Babe Ruth did have more career walks than Ted Williams, by the way. Of course, Williams would have more if he didn't take three years away from baseball to fight in a war. I would take Ruth over Williams too, however, because he was a better hitter. But, calling Williams a loser/ME player is just foolish.

Dude, say what you will but Ted Williams was the ultimate me player. No player loved himself more or talked about it more (except for Pete Rose). that much is fact.

No player loved himself more or talked about it more (except for Pete Rose). that much is fact.

Hmmm. What about Sammy?

Actually he lost years to fight in Two Wars. Had he not, I think he would have broken all of Ruth's career records. In my estimation, the greatest hitter who ever lived. He essentially lost 5 seasons to the Wars (being a Me player for the US Navy as I recall). He would have had to average 38 HR's a year during that time to get to 711 for his career.

Of course Ruth spent a lot of time pitching. I'd take Ruth as the best player but Williams as the best hitter.

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