A Place To Talk About Giants Baseball

The Difference Between Good Decisions and Bad Decisions

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on October 25, 2011

Last January, I mocked the Angels for TRADING FOR V-Wells.

Here was the post I put up after that trade:

Flavor said, on January 21, 2011 at 7:01 pm (Edit)

“the Angels are fucking retarded morons. Trading for Vernon Wells? I don’t give a flying fuck what he did last year, he is probably the most overpaid player in all of baseball based on production (besides Zito). And they TRADED for him. Shit, Napoli, if given a starting spot, might hit more HR’s than him. They coulda paid him 6 mil to do that. Instead they trade for “Mr Nagging Injury” and get to pay him 86 more million. Shit, why didn’t they just overpay for Carl Crawford?”

I couldn’t believe that a GM would WILLINGLY trade for one of those bad, bulging contracts. It was bad enough that a GM would GIVE a guy 100-200 million. But a guy TRADING for one of those contracts? It made no sense at all. Only an idiot would take what Wells did in 2010 and say “Hey, I think he’s back on track. Gimmie Wells and the 85 million he’s still owed.”

Anyway, I also made a quick comment  in passing about the guy the Angels gave up for the great honor of taking on Wells and his bulbis contract. Mike Napoli has been a revelation this year. Besides probably being the WS MVP, this dude banged out 30 bombs this year, he hit .320 with a 1.046 OPS. He was a monster. What did Wells do? He hit .218 with 25 bombs. Predictable.

But that’s not even the thing that blows my mind the most. Who did the Angels have to replace Napoli at catcher? Jeff Freaking Mathis–he’s So-Cal’s version of *Whitey*. Mathis, the last 3 years, has hit .211, .195, and .174. He’s had over 1200 at bats in those 3 years. I understand he’s a stud defensive guy who the manager loves. But he’s batting .194 over the course of the last 3 years. Whiteside just blew a load in his pants. If he doesn’t keep the back up job with SF he can always head down to Anaheim and be embraced with open arms by Mike Scioscia…..

I took a long look at Napoli when I was getting ready for my drafts last Winter but mostly because he qualified as a catcher and you just don’t get anything from that position besides a handful of guys. But, in 30 round leagues he was going 10-11 round and that was just too early for my tastes. Clearly, I made a mistake…..

Toronto is almost as bad as the Angels, they trade FOR this dude and then turn him over to Texas 4 days later for Frank *gas can* Francisco. The Toronto GM was probably so excited to have pawned off Wells he didn’t take much time appreciating the found gold he had, instead pining his hopes on Arencibia who hit about what I thought he’d hit for the year (.219)…..

One GM’s good decision is another GM’s bad decision and those are usually the differences between being on vacation now while the *other guys* are still winning baseball games…….

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  1. willieD said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:09 am

    well, two GMs bad moves to be exact. Scioscia saw diminishing production two years in a row, when Nap OPS dropped 180 points and his slugging went down by 100, and I guess figured he’d seen his best days. Allegedly, he was unhappy about his D behind the plate
    The Toronto guy wanted to play the kid Arencibia, who did manage 23 bombs, but hit .219 for the season, including .201 at home with an OB under mendoza line of .300. No reason not to have kept Napoli and rotated them both in. Wash had Nap split time at 1b and DH. Texas pitching had a good season too, so maybe Angels were just making excuses.
    But again, this is another classic example of the projection stat being FOS. I cringe every time I see “this player is projected to ..” No team with an issue at C figured this guy was going to hit as well as he did, and the Texas GM wanted Nap originally, got his man when Angels wouldn’t deal him to division rival, and it paid off.

  2. willieD said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:15 am

    I didn’t watch any of the game, but following blogger comments on cbs site is a f-ing riot. All the Texas guys think Feliz cannot pitch an inning without walking a couple guys (sound familiar?). If he throws 20 pitches they are sure he will give up a run, and be useless the next day. If there was a game today, no way any of them would bring him in. All he did last night was K Pujols in the 9th with a guy on base, tho most thought Pujols swung at ball four.

  3. willieD said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Lot of argument about wtf Craig was doing too, LaRussa trying to stay out of the DP, and thinking an outside pitch gets driven to right? Kid running on his own, down 2 runs? LaRussa said something about miscommunication in his post game, which Kurkjian commented would have been two of those in consecutive half innings on the STL side, with pretty disastrous results.

    • zumie said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:31 am

      LaRussa claimed the bullpen coach misheard him TWICE on the telephone. Whatever. It’s possible, I guess.

  4. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:47 am

    Bottom line ast night is that LaRussa lost the game. Even his usual apologosists can’t get around it
    “Genius La Rlussa has a rough night”
    This from Tom Verducci:

    • willieD said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:58 am

      Thx, Twin, nice article on the genius out thinking himself and then trying to explain it away. Plus, about mid way down on the right is something about the return of one of my fav actors of all time, Godzilla. Where is raymond burr when you need him?

  5. St said, on October 25, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Passan also blasted LaRussa.

  6. Nipper said, on October 25, 2011 at 9:14 am

    Be nice to ARF!

  7. Nipper said, on October 25, 2011 at 9:29 am

    BF for GM!

  8. big flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 9:41 am

    As someone who can’t stand La Russa’s “I’m smarter than you” attitude, I was LQTM for a while this morning after listening to Tony’s take on why the wrong guy got warmed up in the pen…..

    • Nipper said, on October 25, 2011 at 10:10 am

      He’ll get “smarter” in St. Louis.

  9. TedSpe said, on October 25, 2011 at 10:15 am

    Tony “Can You Hear Me Now?” La Russa
    Fuck him

  10. Macdog said, on October 25, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Just a strange game all around by the Cards. In the 3rd, they have a runner on second and no outs, and Craig bunts the runner over, meaning automatic intentional walk for Pujols. In the 5th, they got first and second and no outs, and Furcal bunts the runners over. So after Craig strikes out, it’s another IBB for Pujols. Why they kept bunting runners over with Pujols either coming up or in the hole only the Genius knows.

  11. blade3colorado said, on October 25, 2011 at 11:10 am

    Good article Twin . . . I also like the Earl Weaver reference. Like Sabean, I haven’t seen uno momento of any of these games, including most highlights, because all of you guys describing it is much, much better, coupled with my vivid imagination.

    • TedSpe said, on October 25, 2011 at 11:58 am

      blade’s vivid video imagination

  12. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Turning Pujols into Nick Punto is the most baffling- and Pujols did it himself once. Yeah, let’s have the best hitter of his generation see if he can punch a dribbler through the right side…two instances when Texas *had* to pitch to him and all of a sudden he’s Fruckie Pujols…

  13. willieD said, on October 25, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Some of it has to be on Pujols tho—he doesn’t have to swing at ball four; he’s not protecting the runner if the ball is outside and he gets a walk. That would have left two on no out, with Holliday and Berkman up, Feliz having thrown a dozen pitches and not gotten anyone out, and Wash straining.

  14. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    Absolutely some is on Pujols- and I definitely believe that the dunderhead called the hit and run in the seventh himself – on that McCarver did a great job, even showing the sign. here’s what Prince Albert said:
    “A hit-and-run was put on, by me, is that a problem?” added Pujols, who relayed his signal through third-base coach Jose Oquendo. “It was a 99-mph pitch away that I couldn’t even get my bat on,” he said. “So I let it go.”
    It’s not optional, shithead- you swing at the pitch even if you have to throw your bat at it..

  15. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    Here’s the link to a one click check of our guys in the Winter Leagues
    Max Ramirez is a possibility for the reserve catcher’s spot- he’s said to have some deficiencies defensively but he’s said to have some real pop…

  16. ewisco said, on October 25, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Henry posted on the splash that crawford is having some success hitting.

    • blade3colorado said, on October 25, 2011 at 2:17 pm

      Ewisco, I am quite encouraged about Crawford after reading this article. This would solve so many problems if he was able to hit .250 to .270 . . . I especially liked this paragraph:

      “Actually, Crawford said, he has the same stance and setup at the plate now that he used the final two weeks of the regular season, when he played every day with the Giants. From Sept. 14-27, the left-handed hitter hit .313 in 36 plate appearances. Four of his 10 hits went for extra bases. Just as important, a kid who has been much to prone to the strikeout had only five in 32 at-bats.”

      The aforementioned article excerpt expands the small sample size from his current Fall League results, which is again, encouraging. Nevertheless, more substantive proof will come in Spring Training. I would much rather we solve our infield problem in-house, then the alternative (and that isn’t Reyes or Rollins being signed, despite what Henry intimated in his article).

      • blade3colorado said, on October 25, 2011 at 2:20 pm

        By the by, Henry (or his editor) needs to do a spell/grammar check after writing The Splash, e.g., “. . . much to prone . . . ” should be “too.”

      • ewisco said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:06 pm

        yes they do have spelling/grammer issues (unlike us!). A young guy that they control for the next few years that plays solid defense (the pitchers would be thrilled) and hits .250 – .270 would be just what the doctor ordered. it doesn’t solve the lead off spot though. but maybe a little coco takes care of that. or maybe torres bounces back. In any case it allows you to save the big bucks required to sign a rollins/reyes and apply it to the pitchers or maybe the elusive big bat.

  17. St said, on October 25, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    Fwiw, Culberson was also tearing it up in the fall league last yr.

  18. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    I’m not going into the alternatives to Crawford- but I hope they have a Plan B. Anyone comfy with giving the job to him based on how he hits this winter and spring is not very conversant with history in similar matters. I’m all for giving him a shot but they’d be wise to have a utilty guy who can play the position well and hit a lick- and maybe keep the spot warm for Adrianza, the better prospect.

    • ewisco said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:08 pm

      agree. there needs to be more depth there if t hey pursue this route. I just think rollins/reyes is a leg injury away from being useless.

      It will be interesting to see what the giants do in the draft this year. As much as they’ve been trying to develop some position players, their pitching in the low levels is pretty thin. They may need to restock that position.

  19. snarkk said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    I’ve read various takes on the 8th inning screwup with the Cards pitching. Some seem to believe LaRussa, others not so much. Whatever the case, he totally screwed that sequence beyond recognition. If the Cards go on to win the WS, maybe this will be forgotten. If they lose it, LaRussa’s bonehead managing there will go down in WS lore as one of the worst ever…

    • Nipper said, on October 25, 2011 at 4:43 pm

      You enjoyed it Snarkk……admit it.

  20. TedSpe said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    Hey twin, Peter Hartruab on SFGate put up a “What’s your scariest movies?” thread.
    Coincedence? I don’t think so

  21. St said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    It’s halloween, Ted.

    • TedSpe said, on October 25, 2011 at 4:05 pm


  22. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Halloween? Now you tell me. Shit, I just filed suit against him…

  23. Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    Brent Jones thinks that La Russa is somehow covering for his bullpen coach. He noted the flat affect that La Russa has used when discussing this. I suppose that’s possible. But when you throw that weird sequence in with Pujols apparently calling a hit and run (when does a player ever do that???) and then doesn’t swing on a play HE supposedly called, with La Russa saying “Who?” in the dugout after it happened, well, it makes Tony look horrible. La Russa made more sense in his 10 minute DUI interview than he did in recounting how all this went down…….

    • TedSpe said, on October 25, 2011 at 5:57 pm

      Brent Jones? As in ex-49er Brent Jones? I didn’t know he was a baseball commentator

      • Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:17 pm

        He’s an ex-pro athlete. All those guys blend in and out of other sports now. And as an ex-pro athlete he understands interviews and the process. I thought he brought up an interesting point that LaRussa’s affect was so flat through all of his interviews. That DOES suggest a guy who isn’t emotionally remorseful of a personal decision. It’s the way you would talk if you felt like you had to cover for someone. That’s actually one of the many ways that cops interviewing possible suspects for crimes determine if they’re lying……

      • TedSpe said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:21 pm

        I wasn’t questioning his ability to comment on baseball. I was just unaware that he was. Tolbert’s a good example as well. Cuz he was a professional, what?…volleyball player?

  24. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Maybe he needed a blood test after the game.

  25. Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 5:56 pm

    It’s a good thing the JaMarcus Russell SI interview came along to take some of the *stupid* heat off La Russa. And then there is the Vince Young lawsuit. He wanted 8000 $1 bills? And he went ballistic and punched a dude in the mouth when he was denied that? How did he come up with that exact number? 8000 seems pretty specific. He must have had some serious stripper/dollars math going that night……

  26. Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    Just read the Purdy re-posted article from last year about Russell. It’s a good read……..


  27. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    Both Pujols and LaRussa claim that Pujols callled the 7th inning hit and run- and both have acted oblivious to the fact that Pujols HAD to make an attempt to protect Craig. Even if, as they claim, he couldn’t have reached the pitch, he still has to throw the bat at it, SOMETHING. LaRussa absurdly says that that would have been a “wasted strike”… yes, it was far better to let Craig get thrown out by ten feet and Pujols then walked… the whole night is fishy. If this had happened to Washington, there would be calls for him to be fired before Game 6- and Ryan just might oblige.

  28. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    After the game, LaRussa said the 7th inning episode ” was a mix-up, and on our team nobody gets thrown under the bus. So it was a mix-up.”
    Today, after acknowledging that Pujols called it, he said “I thought, holy smokes, sometimes you have a regular sign, sometimes you have a flash sign, and I thought, crap, did I put it on?” La Russa said. “Is that the normal hit-and-run? What was that? And he ( Craig ) told me. So then I said, ‘okay.’ I was just glad I didn’t put it on.”
    How do those tire tracks feel, Albert?

  29. Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    “If this had happened to Washington”–totally agree. Fans and talk shows would be calling for his firing. It’s LaRussa? Everyone is like “How could this happen? This CAN’T happen!”. Nobody’s calling for him to be fired. Newsflash: LaRussa is a man, nothing more or less. He firs off moves and changes with the best of them. That’s not *genius* that’s just *a lot of movement.”

  30. Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    I’m not really watching the World Series but I am enjoying IMMENSELY the progression of LaRussa from *baseball genius* to *village idiot* over the course of about a week……..

  31. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    At some point Tony made the conscious decision that letting Pujols take the rap was better for all concerned than taking the heat for what he could have said was just a poor decision on his (LaRussa’s) part. Even if no one believed him, he would come off far better than he is now.Actually, ESPECIALLY if no one believed him.. instead he’s sure glad *he* wasn’t stupid enough to call it…

  32. unca_chuck said, on October 25, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    Did La Russa catch heat for taking his closer out in game 2 in the top of the 9th? Does StL even have a closer? Or does La Russa just mumble nondescript names into the bat phone? I was just about to leave town last Thurs, and didn’t pay much attention til reading all this stuff today.

  33. twinfan1 said, on October 25, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Link to the right “Florida International vs. Troy “…tell us what convinced you that you were finally beyond help..

  34. Flavor said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    CHuck–Welcome back. How’s DC doing without you? We got a game this Sunday dude, get your thread’s up and running on time 🙂

  35. unca chuck said, on October 25, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Hey, I got something out there reasonably quick. Even put up a nice pic . . .

  36. eddacker said, on October 28, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    Freese just hit his triple to tie and the cameras showed a woman in full cardinals gear and full bawling mode.
    Ugly game, but putting yourself in the cardinal fan’s shoes has excitement.
    cannot believe all the articles I have read praising this series, self serving audience fodder, IMHO

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