6:06 am January 17, 2012, by David O'Brien
January 19th, 201211:53 am
Not trying to be an a**, but did anyone really expect Hanson to come out and say “man, I feel like crap. Shoulder is tight and I’ve put on a lot of weight and just don’t know how things will shake out. Hopefully I get to feeling good in spring, but I’m really worried.”? Of course he’s gonna say he feels good. If his issues really did stem from a “weak” muscle in his shoulder or back and he now is doing special weightlifting to strengthen that muscle, then he could be just fine. We’ll find out in June or July once he starts getting some innings accumulated on that shoulder…
January 19th, 201211:54 am
DAP, you are right to some degree.
Although Uggla’s stats for last season were only Batting Average 233 and On Base Average .311;
His career stats are BA – .258 and OBA – 343 — which are somewhat better than I had realized.
January 19th, 201211:55 am
Lew – Hello minimum wage. These days, any job is a good thing.
January 19th, 201211:57 am
Lolly – True, but the truth will come out soon. Let’s hope he (and JJ) are as healthy as he and Wren says he is.
Mike in VA
Remember the books they read. “Mike Mulligan and the Steamshovel”, “Curious George”, and one about a duck on a river in China (I can’t remember the name of the book).
McFann O O o
January 19th, 201211:58 am
Lew He works at the Jungle Land ride.- sometimes he’s the tour guide, others he parks strollers.
Ah man! How long has he worked there?? Wonder if he was ever our tour guide or stroller-parker…
January 19th, 201212:01 pm
raleighbravefan: In your 11:22 post, you forgot Buffalo Bob!
Don His career stats are BA – .258 and OBA – 343 — which are somewhat better than I had realized
and i would say his overall production makes those numbers acceptable. he also has a .482 career slg% to go along with those and consistently pounds out 30+ homers. there arent alot of players left in MLB that can do that.
not to mention that after july 4th last year, he hit .301/.386/.596. thats 3 full months of MVP type production. lets hope he figures it out before july in 2012.
January 19th, 201212:04 pm
It’s Howdy Doody Time! Dude
January 19th, 201212:05 pm
i think its safe to say too, that now that pujols is in LA, Uggla is the top righthanded slugger in the league. perhaps kemp has leapfrogged him, but lets wait and see. uggla has hit 30+ every year for 5 years straight.
January 19th, 201212:07 pm
It has been a while since I last posted (but your blog is still a must-read), but I have a quick question.
You have reported in the past that Martin Prado was very grateful for the Braves giving him a chance to play and appreciative of their faith in him. You have also repeatedly reported that he is incredibly hard working and committed to helping the team.
Do you think this offseason has jaded him at all? Do you think his devotion to the team will be lessened by the team’s lack of devotion to him (or at least the appearance of a lack of devotion)?
This must be a difficult offseason for Prado. I, for one, am a big fan of his and I hope he stays. Not only does he provide above-average offense and tremendous defensive versatility (do we really want to see Jack Wilson starting 40 games at 3B?), but he is a fun player to cheer for.
“Give credit to Rangers ownership and general manager Jon Daniels: They could have rationalized a quiet offseason by saying they would be World Series champions right now if any number of events had transpired differently in the ninth inning of Game 6. They have done the opposite, refusing the convenient course of declaring they were already ‘good enough.’”
I was hoping the Braves would refuse that course. Wren’s initial comments lead me to believe they would. His actions speak otherwise.
January 19th, 201212:13 pm
I was hoping the Braves would refuse that course.
I expected them to get an outfielder and they didn’t, but I never expected them to make wholesale changes. The payroll space just isn’t there and I don’t think we should assume they will go over 90 million at any point within the next few seasons. So knowing that, expectations on player movement can always be based on that hard salary number, imo.
January 19th, 201212:14 pm
Wren must have a lot of faith in his new hitting coach to turn the Braves’ hitters into the type of hitters he wanted to acquire.
Tough outs, guys that hit to the situation… this group could be those things, especially now with AGon gone.
We’ll see. I think a lot of what happens this season is on JHey’s shoulders. If he regains his form and other guys play to their capabilities then this is definitely a dangerous group of hitters. If JHey stumbles then it throws a wrench into the works… the team needs his production.
JHey hitting is not a “nice to have”… it’s a necessity if the ‘12 Braves are going to compete.
January 19th, 201212:16 pm
Good read. Better than Buster’s rankings, imo.
January 19th, 201212:31 pm
For those who don’t have access to Buster Olney’s full ESPN.com blog, I thought you might be interested to see what’s being discussed regarding the addition of another wild-card team in each league. Buster wrote:
• Major League Baseball continues to work toward the expansion of the playoff field from eight to 10 teams for the upcoming season, and the greatest impediment is the fact that the regular-season schedule is already set, starting on April 4 and ending Oct. 3. The one-game playoff between wild-card teams would have to happen immediately after the end of the regular season, given that the World Series will be scheduled to start around Oct. 24.
Other issues would have to be resolved, as well, such as the question of how to handle ties at the end of the regular season. If two teams tied for the No. 6 spot, a playoff game would be required, of course.
But it’s possible that with the value of winning a division ramped up so dramatically under the new format — a division winner gets a bye, while the wild-card teams will have to play one elimination game — teams will want a playoff to break first-place division ties. Under the 2011 format, if teams tied for first place had one of the top four records in their respective league, a division championship was determined by best head-to-head record.
What if, under the new format, the Los Angeles Angels and Rangers tied for first place in the AL West with 96 wins, the Detroit Tigers won 94 games to win the Central, the Tampa Bay Rays won the East with 93 victories, and the Yankees clinched a wild-card spot with 91 victories? The winner of the AL West would be the No. 1 seed, and the second-place team would play the Yankees in an elimination game. So would it be better to have a one-game playoff between the Rangers and Angels, or just determine the winner by head-to-head play?
It’s under discussion. There remains a high level of confidence that MLB will use the new 10-team format for the upcoming season.
January 19th, 201212:32 pm
Am I being homeristic in thinking the Braves’ starting 5 should be ranked higher than the Yankees’ starting 5?
I look at their rotation and I’m just not seeing it.
January 19th, 201212:35 pm
Welcome the new dawn of the MLBNBA, where soon everyone but the 4 or 5 worst teams will make the playoffs. And even they will have their own playoffs to determine who really is the bottom of the barrel.
Is December baseball far off? I guess with global warming and all it’s not such a bad thing.
January 19th, 201212:37 pm
McFann – Not likely. He just started working at that particular location and has been an employee since late last spring – then he got sick and missed all that time. When he returned, they had to move him from working in food service to another area because of having to stand on his foot all day.
raleighbraves – they pay better than minimum wage by a dollar or so – however we live on the other side of Orlando from the theme parks – a 45 minute commute over terribly congested roads, including I 4. Costs way too much in gas to get there and hime again. He’d likely do as well working in a neighborhood Magic Mart or something where he had no commute at outrageous gas prices.
murph, i think folks evaluating rotations are over hyping pineda, possibly. he is a good pitcher, but very young, and he didnt have a good 2nd half last year. its definitely possible that he takes a step back this year. i do think they have a good rotation though. it doesnt hurt my feeling to see the braves not in the top 5, because we do have some question marks.
by the end of the season, however, i believe the braves will look like a top 5 rotation.
January 19th, 201212:38 pm
I’m confused on how Darvish is now the highest paid right hander in MLB? If his deal is 6 years for 60 million, that means he’s paid $10 mil a year right? I’m sure some Yankees or Philles easily make more than 10 mil a year. Is Buster Olney just wrong here, or am I missing something in the equation?
January 19th, 201212:39 pm
Lew, I missed it… who works for Disney? Your son? What does he do there?
January 19th, 201212:44 pm
Why put emphasis on being a division winner unless MLB can have assurance that all divisions are equal in quality? Why should a 90-win, second-place team in the AL East be seeded lower than an 89-win AL Central division winner, for example? Why reward teams for winning weak divisions and punish teams for playing better baseball in a tougher division? The MLB postseason will become a bigger joke than it is already, if they don’t do their seeding in a way that makes sense.
January 19th, 201212:45 pm
Good points, Shaun.
Wait, did I just… yeah, I did.
January 19th, 201212:46 pm
I’m confused on how Darvish is now the highest paid right hander in MLB? If his deal is 6 years for 60 million, that means he’s paid $10 mil a year right? — Lollygagger
Yeah, you’re missing a big something — the $51.7 million posting fee the Rangers paid just to win negotiating rights. Add the $51.7 mill to the $60 million contract and the total is $111.7 million for six years, making him the most expensive right-hander in history.
Which is insane.
And then there’s this, Buster writes: The Rangers have to pay the $51.7 million posting fee to Darvish’s old team in the next five days, so in the assessment of what Texas is doling out, you could treat this as a signing bonus — which would take the present-day value of Darvish’s cost into the range of $115-120 million, according to one longtime agent.
Murph – Yep, my son. He works at the Jungle Land ride.
January 19th, 201212:48 pm
Lew, that’s awesome… is he the one who shoots the hippo after it pops up out of the water? I always wanted to be that guy. Sad that they pay so poorly. Does he at least get discounts on admission and other Disney stuff?
I will laugh and also be frustrated when the second-best team in a league has to play hard for a few weeks in hopes of winning a really tough division while the second wild card team is rather mediocre and can cruise into that one-game playoff with it’s best pitchers all rested and ready to go. This will point out the absurdity of the new MLB playoff format. I just hope that second-best team in the league is not the Braves when that scenario arises.
January 19th, 201212:50 pm
insane to spend that kind of money on a pitcher who has no track record in MLB. The Rangers would have been better long term to sign fielder and then one of the free agent pitchers next year.
I expected them to get an outfielder and they didn’t, but I never expected them to make wholesale changes.
“wholesale changes” isn’t what the Rangers did either. And it really isn’t what I’ve been wanting either.
Thanks for the heads up, raleighbravefan!
January 19th, 201212:51 pm
I will laugh and also be frustrated when the second-best team in a league has to play hard for a few weeks in hopes of winning a really tough division while the second wild card team is rather mediocre and can cruise into that one-game playoff with it’s best pitchers all rested and ready to go. This will point out the absurdity of the new MLB playoff format
Exactly, it’s a joke.
Murph – Free admission to all their parks (except Wide World of Sorts where the Braves train) for himself and whoever goes with him.
Welcome the new dawn of the MLBNBA, where soon everyone but the 4 or 5 worst teams will make the playoffs. And even they will have their own playoffs to determine who really is the bottom of the barrel.
Is December baseball far off? I guess with global warming and all it’s not such a bad thing. — Murph
It’s one extra wild-card team and one extra postseason game in each league. Let’s not exaggerate, Murph.
By the way, that makes it 10 out of 30 major league teams that make the postseason. How many teams make the playoffs in the NFL and NBA? (Answer: 12 of 32 NFL teams, and 16 of 30 NBA teams.)
January 19th, 201212:52 pm
The Rangers have to pay the $51.7 million posting fee to Darvish’s old team in the next five days, so in the assessment of what Texas is doling out, you could treat this as a signing bonus — which would take the present-day value of Darvish’s cost into the range of $115-120 million, according to one longtime agent.
With the tiny little caveat that the $51M isn’t going in Darvish’s wallet, like a typical signing bonus.
Thanks DOB. I did not realize that the posting fee counted on his overall salary. I though the posting fee was NOT included toward the Rangers payroll, but instead counted like a signing bonus. So why is his deal not then stated as a 6-year $111 million deal?
And it really isn’t what I’ve been wanting either.
I understand that, but I didn’t really even ever expect anything more than a 4th outfielder be added. I never once thought Heyward’s job was in jeopardy. Not once.
January 19th, 201212:53 pm
I hope Darvish isn’t another Kawakami… I like the Rangers and would hate to see them suffer through Darvish the way we had to suffer through KK.
Oh crap, wait… That posting fee goes to other team, not Yu. Nevermind. He’s most expensive, not highest paid. I got it.
January 19th, 201212:54 pm
Ten Paul – Maybe you need to follow another team. You haven’t been happy with the direction the Braves have taken, their lineup, the money they’ve spent, the money they haven’t spent, their draft system. their ownership group or their front office, ever since I’ve been here in DOB Land, which is now about to be for season number 8.
January 19th, 201212:55 pm
The posting fee doesn’t count towards the team salary, and I believe none of the fee goes to the player- but it does count in the overall cost of the player (does that make sense?) so it would be considered part of his cost…
You beat me to it
And not only should you have known going in that it wasn’t going to change and that it likely won’t in the foreseeable future. Nothing but pain and frustration for you as long as the Braves are your team.
January 19th, 201212:56 pm
I don’t think it is indicated in their payroll as a 111 million over six years. Was Boston and Dice-K looked at like that. I believe his was 103 million over 6 years.
16 of 30 NBA teams
Yes, I exaggerated to make a point, but this is where MLB is headed.
Over the past 10 or 15 years, how many of those NBA teams in the playoffs had losing records? I know it’s more than 1… and 1 is 1 too many. The NBA season and playoffs are complete jokes… no legitimacy to any of it. Purely based on revenue, not on competition or quality of product.
The MLB postseason will become a bigger joke than it is already, if they don’t do their seeding in a way that makes sense.
Exactly. Baseball, with its pristine fields… you must, must, seed in the fall, best in mid-September. It gives ample time for the seeds to germinate, take root and last through the winter. Come the following Spring and Summer you’ll have a thick luscious field. And always feed. It’s a living thing too, ya know. It needs food and water.
Murph – Free admission to all their parks (except Wide World of Sports where the Braves train) for himself and whoever goes with him. — Lew
So that’s free admission to all the parks except the only one that an adult might actually want to enter without children.
January 19th, 201212:57 pm
I should probably read my posts before I hit submit. That one sort of wandered off at the end…
“…which would take the present-day value of Darvish’s cost into the range of $115-120 million, according to one longtime agent.”
So, $120 million divided by 6 years is $20 million a year.
In 2011, here are some pitchers whose performances were worth in the $20 million range, based on what teams paid for wins in the free agent market in 2011 (based on FanGraphs’ value estimates):
Brandon McCarthy: $20.2 million
David Price: $21 million
Tim Lincecum: $19.6 million
Josh Becket: $19.2 million
So an average of essentially around $20 million a season for Darvish is about fair market value for a pitcher with his skills.
January 19th, 201212:59 pm
January 19th, 2012
I am not DOB but I will give you my opinion. With all the trade talk it seems F WREN does not think very highly of MARTIN, and yes if I were MARTIN my opinion of BRAVES management would be somewhat jaded. I believe the BRAVES have treated MARTIN badly over the winter, Martin has given 100% effort the years he has been here.
The NFL rewards division winners with a home game, also. Last year 12-4 New Orleans had to play at 7-9 Seattle in the first round. It’s just the way it is. Winning your division, no matter how strong or weak, is rewarded with playing at home. Personally, I have no problem with it. It’s not the team’s fault their division is not as strong as others, why should they be punished?
January 19th, 20121:00 pm
yeah, it dawned on me just after I hit send… there’s a big difference between him being most expensive and him being the highest paid pitcher per year. Buster was looking at overall cost to Rangers team, when I was looking only at Darvish’s per-year salary. I’m a little slow today.
You haven’t been happy with the direction the Braves have taken…….their draft system.
Unless you don’t follow it, no Braves fan should be happy with the direction their draft process has taken. I’ll buy that they needed to fill the middle levels of the system if they go big on upside and don’t spend 19 of their first 20 picks on cheap college players in 2012, however if that trend continues, absolutely every Braves fan should be concerned.
January 19th, 20121:01 pm
He hasn’t thrown a pitch in the U S of A yet… i wouldn’t go anointing him as a $20mil pitcher quite yet.
Lew, that’s an exaggeration. And, I’ll continue to follow the Braves. You’ll just have to learn to accept the fact that I want my favorite team to improve every season.
January 19th, 20121:02 pm
@JasonIsbell been paying your music flat out for the last week. Puts me in a good mood. — Peter Moylan
This is fantastic. DOB, how cool would it be to hear Never Gonna Change or Go It Alone come across the Turner Field PA system when the bullpen gate opens and the Aussie comes trotting in to the mound.
Alright, headed to the company meeting/movie… Sherlock Holmes! Not a bad way to spend a Thursday afternoon.
See y’all tomorrow.
Happens to the best of us It usually takes my brain a long time to wake up…the tea is helping today
January 19th, 20121:03 pm
George – Dude, your view of Braves’ management IS more than somewhat jaded.
You never heard any of those trade rumorscoming from the Braves, did you? All you heard was Prado’s name was floated out there (just like they put the entire team on trhe Waiver list at trade deadline). Also, you have no idea whther or not Wren called Martin to let him know that most of this was rumors, do you?
I contend that Prado’s job with the Braves was never in jeapordy this winter because no one was about to offer us what he is worth TO us. All we heard were a bunch of rumors from other teams’ writers that obviously had no clue.
Oh boy. So I wonder if Brandon McCarthy will be receiving a 20 million dollar a year contract next offseason. And if he doesn’t, and settles for less, is that a steal for the signing team?
Cab, for the most part I agree with you. A division winner shouldn’t be punished. But one could make a very strong case that a team that goes 12-4 in a tough division shouldn’t be punished either.
Can’t have it both ways I guess. Somebody is gonna get screwed either way.
January 19th, 20121:04 pm
Except, he has yet to pitch in the majors. Every pitcher you listed in that range has pitched in the majors and for several seasons.
It’s a lot of cash to promise to a rookie.
January 19th, 20121:06 pm
30 Percent of MLB teams making playoffs is just fine with me, and is still a lower percentage than other major sports. However, I would like to see the seeding of teams tweaked a bit to better reward division winners as cabravesfan stated above. I’m also not a big fan of a one-game wild card round, and instead would love to see them shorten regular season by a week or two if they are worried about a World Series in mid-November… then we could have a 3-game or 5-game wild card round without effecting the timing of World Series.
Ten Paul – NO, what you want is basically the impossible cause you should know it won’t happen as you want it to.
Beltran never was an option. Neither were 99% of the names floated by people here (you and others). I tried telling y’all all along that we’d end up with a back up short stop and (Hopefillu) a better outfielder and nothing else. NO one wanted to believe that would happen and suggested all sorts of unrealistic garbage.
And then they wondered why they were so disappointed. Expectations Dude. Outrageously inflated hopes and dreams have a way of leaving you disappointed.
January 19th, 20121:08 pm
One thing is for sure……if baseball is worried about going to late in the season…….there’s always a few of those 160 regular season games that could be chopped off?
Not that we want this to turn into the NBA where no-good-sub-.500 teams have to get pounded by the best. But having a couple more in baseball wouldn’t be so bad. Right now there are just far too many teams out of the running by spring training, lets give a few more teams something to play for.
Look at the Braves for example. One of the top 10 teams most of the year…..we didn’t make that tight playoff cut and 90% of this blog is fuming as if we’re the bloody Pirates.
I don’t have a problem with how many teams are in. I have a problem with seeding and rewarding rather mediocre teams for winning weak divisions while great teams in tough divisions are punished.
Also, baseball is completely different from other sports, with the possible exception of hockey. In basketball and football, the best team has a much better chance to win one game or a 5-game series or a 7-game series. In baseball, it’s not unheard of for a legitimately great team to have a bad few weeks, and it’s certainly not unheard of for a great team to lose 4 of 7.
Now, I understand the line has to be drawn somewhere. MLB can’t have a 30-game playoff series. But why not give the best teams that have proven themselves over 162 games at least a slightly better shot at winning it all than teams that have proven they are not as good? Giving an advantage to an 89-win division winner playing in this year’s NL Central over a 93-win team in the NL East that finishes second to the Phillies, for example, doesn’t make any sort of sense and makes the regular season much less meaningful than it’s ever been.
January 19th, 20121:09 pm
George, I tend to think the opposite. I think the reason Martin is still a Brave, is BECAUSE Wren thinks so highly of him. All players that aren’t 10/5 guys should be “available” for the right price.
If another team wants to overpay for one of your star players, then a decision must be made. Wren was clearly open to trading Martin for the right price. Seth Smith was NOT the right price.
If the Braves thought poorly of Martin, they would have dumped him at the first available offer. Maybe even selling low. Like some think they did with Yunel. Same with Lowe. It’s not so much what they thought of Lowe. But what they think Minor or Beachy can provide in place of Lowe.
If the Braves weren’t stocked with young pitchers, make no mistake. D-Lowe would still be a Brave. That move was about clearing space for a better, younger (and cheaper) option. Addition by subtraction if you will.
But the fact that Martin is still a Brave speaks volumes to me about Wren thinks his value to the Braves is. He still could be moved (as could Jurrjens) if the price is right.
Stop looking so hard between the lines to find a reason to bitch about Wren’s lack of respect for what Prado has to offer.
You can argue that this year, the Saints went 13-3 in a harder division than the Niners, who also went 13-3 in a much weaker division. But the Niners took care of business against non division opponents, which is why they had the tie breaker and got the home game. Last year, the Saints were clearly better than the Seahawks, but they didn’t do what they needed to do to earn a home play off game. The hawks did.
I want to hear the country honk of Codeine being played when Moylan takes the field!
January 19th, 20121:11 pm
Still think the Braves PA anouncer (or whoever is in charge of entrance music), should play a Nickelback tune the first time Moylan comes into a game. LOL.
Just might piss him off enough to make him more mean and nasty than he already is on the mound.
January 19th, 20121:12 pm
And improvement is definitely in the eye of the beholder.
I tend to think that we HAVE improvement. Lowe is gone to be replaced by a younger pitcher with more upside. Logan McNatefer is gone, replaced by Michael Bourn, who – even with a less than stellar performance as a Brave, is still an improvement.
Our pen is deeper with the loss of Proctor, Linebrink and Sherril, replaced by Medlen, Varvaro, Vizcaino, Fish and Moylan (not to mention the kids at AAA).
The only position we MIGHT be weaker at this year is shortstop -0 and even there, at least offensive3ly, the bar ain’t set all that high.
The pen is stronger, center field is stronger and the pitching staff is certainly is no worse off than it was starting in August. Most of the people hurt are better now and those that aren’t are backed up quite well.
Tell me that this isn’t improvement
George/Georgetown Kid – I think Martin can look at this two ways (like George said) or he can look at it as he was the best piece for the Braves to move to make the organization but he wasn’t moved so Wren and the boys must think highly of him not to trade him unless they get a good haul back.
Martin is the consummate professional (as said by DOB and every single Braves person ever having interaction with him) and I don’t think some trade talks will make him think less of himself or the Braves. It may however put a chip on his shoulder and make him come back and prove everyone that doubted his skills as a LF’er wrong.
January 19th, 20121:13 pm
“You can argue that this year, the Saints went 13-3 in a harder division than the Niners, who also went 13-3 in a much weaker division” cab
“Last year, the Saints were clearly better than the Seahawks, but they didn’t do what they needed to do to earn a home play off game. The hawks did.”
January 19th, 20121:16 pm
I really hope is it pouring rain on Sunday. Not only does it slow down the Giants WR’s, but also their speed rushers on defense.
Mike – Yeah, great books. One of my favorites was Stone Soup.
ccrider – The original Clarabelle was played by none other than….Bob Keeshan.
January 19th, 20121:17 pm
TennPaul, Murph, etc., what’s the difference in paying Darvish what you think he’ll be worth and paying any other free agent what you think he’ll be worth? The future is a mystery for any player. Teams (at least the smart ones) pay players based on how they project he will perform over the length of that contract. That’s how free agency works.
Efrim, McCarthy’s performance in 2011 and 2011 alone was worth that much according to what teams paid for a win in the 2011 free agent market. That doesn’t mean it would be smart for a team to assume he will repeat that performance and pay him in 2013-2016 for what he did in his 2011 season. That’s another thing that most front offices these days realize.
Those 2011 values were based on performances for the 2011 season. Players have fluke seasons all the time. It doesn’t mean they’ll perform the same in future seasons, and therefore it doesn’t mean a team should pay players what their past performances in single seasons were worth.
January 19th, 20121:19 pm
Lew – Don’t you know…You’ve got to make a crazy trade to improve!
They didn’t win their division. Therefore, they did not do what they needed to do to earn a home game. As for this year, You have to look at what the Niners did against a very hard non division schedule. Besides, the Saints lost to the Rams. THE RAMS. There is no excuse that anyone can come up with that would make that ok.
Lew pretty much nailed it at 1:12. Well done sir.
Only real argument people bitching about the lack of Braves moves have is that the rest of the NL East all improved themselves (other than the Mets).
But here’s the thing. The Phillies were ALREADY light years ahead of the rest of the division. The Nationals finished 8.5 games behind the Braves and 21.5 games behind the Phils, and the Marlins were 17 games behind the Braves and 30 games behind the Phils.
Maybe with Gonzalez on board and strasburg coming back the Nats are serious contenders to overtake the Braves? Maybe not. We rid ourselves of Lowe, improved our bullpen and have Bourn for the whole year. But the Marlins? Sorry. Their moves didn’t instantly make them 17 games better.
Better and improved? Yes.
Worst case scenario the NL Wildcard is now more of a dogfight than ever before. But lets not forget. The Cards lost Albert Pujols.
Braves will be in this thing just like they have been the past two years. Only thing that’s changed is the other teams they’ll be fighting with over the wild card.
January 19th, 20121:23 pm
NHL recently tried to push for a league restructure and it was just plain awful (I know hockey doesn’t really get much talk in the States). It tried to put even more emphasis on divisions like it was the 90’s all over again.
Today’s sports, people tend to skip the divisional standings and head right to the conference for NHL, NBA and NFL because you want to see that playoff line. Everyone gets upset when it comes to weaker/stronger divisions, such as teams that get a really short stick like Toronto and Baltimore up against mega salaries from NY and Boston.
There’s little to no advantage to give a baseball team a bye, so I think they are forced to do 6 teams each conference. They can get creative with how to determine those 6 at the end with records/ties and so forth. I hate the idea of one day playoffs in baseball, it’s always been a game about winning series even in the regular season, not a single game.
“They didn’t win their division. Therefore, they did not do what they needed to do to earn a home game”
Cab, you’re doing nothing more than repeating the “rule” to justify the result. My fundamental argument is that it’s debatable whether a team that goes 12-4 (last year’s standings), gets screwed out of a home game to a 7-9 Seahawks team in a weak division is fair or not.
I wasn’t arguing about what happened this year. Or did the Saints lose to the Rams last year? Is that what you were talking about?
Efrim, it’s sort of like Brady Anderson in 1996. Anderson was one of the 10 best players in the league that season. But he wasn’t that good before or after and all the signs were that that season was a fluke. Say he was worth $13 million in 1996 free agent dollars in the 1996 season (that’s just a wild guess). Does that mean it would have been wise for a team to assume he would repeat that season going forward and sign him to a $13 million-a-year deal for 5-6 more years? Of course not.
You have to look at what the Niners did against a very hard non division schedule.
That looks like it may be tougher next year. I believe we get AFC East and NFC North + the Giants and the Saints.
I got a subscription to Rolling Stone so I’m forcing myself to take lunches at work and read. Just read a great article on the Black Keys in their 1/19/12 issue in case anyone wants to find it online if they’re bored.
January 19th, 20121:24 pm
it’s sort of like Brady Anderson in 1996.
I get it, Shaun. Thanks.
Logan McNatefer is gone, replaced by Michael Bourn.
January 19th, 20121:26 pm
Yup, I was right.
January 19th, 20121:29 pm
NFL is a touchy subject but it benefits from a truly rotational schedule for all but 2 games. Even those are distributed pretty fairly. Hard to do anything about the teams that show up and who you have to play.
Lets be honest….the NFL is all about what teams at what point have a franchise QB to ride.
Hard to create a playoff structure without any flaws. Unless you have one league, no divisions, no conferences, rotational schedule only and the top X teams make it. Pure chance if you get an easy or hard schedule which leads to…..more flaws! lol
So DOB – what was the issue with Orlando Cabrera? Did Braves just try to lowball him and he was offended and wouldn’t even negotiate, or have you heard that he set his mind to retire no matter what? Curious.
They didn’t get screwed out of a home game. Simply because that IS the rule. No quotes needed. The rule says division winners get home games. The better record doesn’t mean anything. It’s not like they didn’t know that they would open on the road. So there is no real debate as to wether they were “screwed” or not. They weren’t.
Yeah, I saw the Niners opponents for next year- brutal road schedule (home is not much better)…
January 19th, 20121:30 pm
oops, sorry. Bold was a nice touch, though, dontcha think?
January 19th, 20121:32 pm
TennPaul, Murph, etc., what’s the difference in paying Darvish what you think he’ll be worth and paying any other free agent what you think he’ll be worth? The future is a mystery for any player.
Yeah, but he has never pitched in the majors. Pitching every 5th day instead of 6 like in Japan, different size of the baseball in the ML, much tougher opposing batters than over in Japan, etc.
The Rangers are crazy imo. I don’t expect Darvish to do much better over here than Dice K has since he arrived.
“They didn’t win their division. Therefore, they did not do what they needed to do to earn a home game.”
So in baseball this season, say the Braves win 95 games, fall short of winning the division over an 100-win Phillies team while playing in a division with over-.500 teams like Washington and Miami and a Mets team that finishes nearly .500. Say the Reds win the NL Central with 85 wins, and say no other team is above .500. Does it make any sense that the Braves would be forced into a one-game playoff against a much weaker team while the Reds get in easily and don’t have to worry about winning a one-game playoff? The Braves superiority over the Reds throughout the 162-game season means nothing. Simple solution: the two playoff teams with the worst records play in the one-game playoff, regardless of whether they won their divisions.
January 19th, 20121:33 pm
I hate 1 game playoffs for baseball…And there is always the issue of big advantages to be had for teams that are able to line up their pitching.
Only real solutions to increased playoffs for baseball are shorter regular season (makes sense, but owners will never give up those games), or WS played in neutral warm or domed location (which would be a terrible solution).
January 19th, 20121:35 pm
Yup, Seattle will challenge them next year. Perhaps even Arizona. Both of those teams aren’t nearly as bad as people think. Seattle’s defense is young, and very talented.
lew I tend to think that we HAVE improvement.
me too. i think the offense is better, the SP is better, the bullpen is better (wasnt sure that was possible) OF defense is better, INF defense is worse. overall, i think this team improved.
January 19th, 20121:36 pm
Totally agree. As long as everyone knows the rules and plays by the same set of rules, teams aren’t getting screwed. Wanna host a playoff game? Then win one more game and your division. Simple. There’s no perfect system… look at college this year- a team that couldn’t even win their own conference ends up winning a national title. Again, there’s no perfect system.
cabravesfan, January 19th, 2012, 12:59 pm … “Winning your division, no matter how strong or weak, is rewarded with playing at home. … It’s not the team’s fault their division is not as strong as others, why should they be punished?”
I think the point was, a weak team winning a weak division gets an advantage over a strong team coming in second in a strong division.
For instance, if the Padres won the West with an 80-82 record, why should they seed higher than the San Francisco Giants who lost to the Braves with 100-62 record?
January 19th, 20121:37 pm
Shaun I think MLB needs to stay as far away from one game playoffs as it can….just keeping the history of the game which is nearly always built on 3 game series. There are a lot of teams out ther built much better for a series than a single game. A huge portion of baseball and it’s ‘team’ is built around that starting rotation.
I don’t think it’s any more fair for a team with one gem on the mound to get a single game over a team that has 3 really good starters.
If there is a significant meaning to something at the end of a year…….has to be at the very least a best of 3 and play it like we’re so used to big series throughout the season.
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