Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Future Is Yours

HtotheIzzo: Remember that copyright infringement suit?
DRProteinShake34: Yeah.
HtotheIzzo: You're going to owe me a lot of money.
DRProteinShake34: Don't worry, bro.
DRProteinShake34: I got some savings.
HtotheIzzo: What if I take you
HtotheIzzo: for more than your savings?
DRProteinShake34:

Just like all those people in those John Hancock commercials texting back and forth until they don't have any answers about their financial planning situation, it looks like our friend DRProteinShake needs some career advice. Look no further than to The GM.

My advice: Realize that the baseball season starts on April 1st, not May 15th. This will land you a contract somewhere. Playing ball in spring training mode and making everyone, from the fans to the media to yourself to your bosses whether you're going to hit the ball out of the infield ever again for a month and a half, is not a good way to get a long-term contract. Doing exactly that for two years in a row only exacerbates the problem.

From the FNO zone: David Ortiz is turning 35 years old this month.
In 2010, he was hitting .185 on May 10.
In 2009, he was hitting .185 on May 31.
One loss in April when your DH goes 0-6 is worth just as much as one loss in August when Dan Johnson takes your closer deep.

Leading to the following opinion: The player should look no further than his own pitiful performance when trying to figure out why the Red Sox are not interested in listening to him whine about deserving a long-term contract.

Ortiz apparently wants long-term security and wants to find out where he's going to be in the future. Well, here's a quick answer: Not Boston. This team, which is going to start making a push to become a relevant playoff team again in 2012, won't be interested in carrying the dead weight of an old, whiny one-tool player who realizes how to hit a baseball around May 20th and becomes both a baseball-related and behavioral-related distraction until that very point. Memo to Ortiz: It's not the media's fault that you are in spring training mode when the games count.

Right now Ortiz wants a contract without earning one. If you play an entire season worth of baseball, which he hasn't done since 2007 (not fair because he was hurt in 2008), that's a good way to earn a contract. Prove that you would actually provide value to a baseball team beyond, well, tomorrow and you will be able to earn a long-term contract. The fact that he has almost literally forgotten how to hit for about a quarter of the last two baseball seasons is an indication that he will NOT provide long-term value to a baseball team.

The games in April and May count. If you need four months of spring training, fine. Start working out the day after Christmas. You have done nothing to lead a rational thinker to believe you wouldn't be burning a roster spot if you were given a long-term contract. Look at the other burnout/DHes around the league.

Vlad Guerrero: One year, $7 million.
Bobby Abreu, 2009: One year, $5 million. (He earned a two-year deal after SHOWING UP TO PLAY BASEBALL ALL YEAR in 2009).
Pat Burrell, 2009: Two years, $16 million.
Jermaine Dye: Nothing.
Andruw Jones: One year, $500,000.
Adrian Beltre (more than one tool): One year, $10 million.

What on God's green earth makes you think you are any different from any of these guys? Is it the fact that you're not only a DH who takes six weeks off at the beginning of the year, but also the most savvy investigator since Inspector Gadget while you find out the real reason for that positive test in 2003? Is it because you are a playoff hero? Ask Andruw Jones about it.

Use your brain, David Ortiz. You want to put more money into that Capital One account like Randy Moss, fine. Shut up and start playing baseball for the entire season.

Enjoy yo day.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

DV

In all likelihood, the best Red Sox player in our lives has been Manny Ramirez. The best pitcher was Pedro Martinez. But David Ortiz is arguably the most important player the Sox have EVER had (Good arguments for Pedro, Manny, and Schilling can all be made). Obviously there's a distinction there, but it's one that shouldn't be easily overlooked.

Because the Red Sox have been such a big part of my life (which may or may not be an indictment of my social life) David Ortiz has been involved in probably 6-8 of the hundred greatest moments I've ever experienced. Clearly, I'm a fan. And aside from all his heroics, let's not forget that he finished in the top-5 in MVP voting five straight years.

Now, with all that in mind, let's be honest--he's old. He's shown that he's the type to start slow the past two seasons. He is a DH and can't play any other position. And there just isn't a great market for players like that. The fact is, if the Sox picked up his option they'd be doing him a favor, because in all likelihood he probably would be lucky to get $12 million for TWO years, let alone one.

Moreover, and I know we've talked about this before, but whatever happened to signing a contract and sticking to it? It's not like he hasn't been well compensated. He's made a ton of money and reinvented himself in Boston to the point that he's a legend. If he goes out and dominates this year and gets a fat contract elsewhere, I won't blame him for it. I'll wish him well. But until then, the rules of the world apply to him just like everyone else--it's a 'what have you done for me lately' place.

--the Gunn

TimC said...

Love that we have reached the point where we are going to poke a bit of fun at those commercials. I'll come up with some good ones over the next couple days.

Gunn, good points on Pedro/Manny. I'll add that I am currently working on 'Most Important Japanese Red Sox player of our lifetime' list.

My question here; why do we pretend with Ortiz? He's a reverse slurpee. Like has been pointed out, the guy just does not start playing ball until May. So why let him? Why pay him equally when he sucks and when he hits? Cut a deal with him that keeps him in the Dominican until May and have him report to the team in June. It worked for Clemens, Pedro, etc., guys whose bodies could no longer handle 162 games but were still skilled enough to contribute in lesser time.

In general, why do over the hill athletes punish themselves by trying to play out these grueling North American regular seasons? Baseball and football are one thing as the season does matter to playoff qualification. But why does Yao bother playing more than half of Houston's games? Why break your foot in March and miss the playoffs when you could do so in August against Singapore and miss the start of the next regular season? It makes mind-bogglingly little sense. The Celtics, with their depth, could do this by having Shaq in street clothes on one of the two back-to-back games because in the NBA there are NO BACK TO BACKS IN THE PLAYOFFS.

Anywho. Old guys, be smart, sit out, and be ready when it matters.

Anonymous said...

Tim

The back to back's point is one that I don't know enough about from a research standpoint, but on it's face, it sounds like a great idea.

Speaking of aging players, is it me, or does Kevin Garnett look like a completely different guy this year? I bet we could go find 4-6 20 point games for KG all last year. He's had two in a row this season. He's just looks to have better spring in his step. It's as much like the 2008 Garnett as I've seen.

--the Gunn

TimC said...

Sure is, regarding KG, Gunn, but the question comes to mind; would better restriction of his minutes in '08 have brought him back quicker this year? Would a more intelligent approach to 4 games in 5 days have prevented this injury in '09? Why is he back this year, but not last?

His injury was, by some accounts, about as bad as it gets in terms of long-term effect. Maybe there was nothing he could have done to accelerate the process. Still, I do wonder if, as athletes age, it would make more sense to go full season, 90% of season, 80% of season, etc., rather than full season, full season, sudden retirement, particularly in sports where the regular season is just a non-factor for 10-12 teams like it is in the NBA. Sign with one of those teams, play 50 games, and crush the playoffs.

Back to KG for a quick second, if he is back to what he was (and we'll give it a month but remember that he destroyed Gasol in a couple of finals game last June) the Celtics are probably the November favorite for the NBA title. Not a huge distinction, but still, impressive. They are also a veteran team that should know how to peak during the playoffs, as they have done in three straight seasons. On the other hand, he did take a cortisone shot last spring and looked much better after it; did he do so again? No way to tell but time.

Anonymous said...

Tim

I'm inclined to agree that resting aging players is in everyone's best interest, especially in a league where half the teams make the playoffs. As for KG in particular, I know that even in 2007-08 Doc went to great pains to play him fewer minutes than he'd played while in Minnesota. For instance, his last season in Minnesota he played 39.4 minutes per game. His first season in Boston was 32.8 minutes, a decrease of about 20%, which is pretty significant. And in fact, KG has average right around 31-32 minutes his entire Boston career, so resting him (as a Celtic) is not a new thing that Doc just started last year. Moreover, in comparison to Ray Allen and Paul Pierce (both have averaged 35-36 minutes per game since the start of 2007-08) KG is really getting his rest. I think that KG can play about 30 a night without issue, but that Ray and Paul probably could benefit from getting into the 32-33 minute range themselves.

--the Gunn

Patrick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Pat,

You were right- Rondo isn't very good.

Bandi

TimC said...

Possibly, Gunn, but KG did get hurt in Year 2, so if rest is a factor it seems to me he did not get ENOUGH rest. On the other hand, sitting someone like '08 KG for more than 18 minutes a night was not going to sit well with anyone, save for maybe Mr. Scal.

Classic PF 'read four words, jump to conclusion' counter, which I have certainly enjoyed in this space these days. Again, let's give it some time, see if he is back, and then we can start handing out favorites. If he did take a shot, we'll probably know soon enough. It is not a stretch, anyway, as the Celts were a Perk injury away from winning last year and will probably improve once he returns this year.

On that topic, unlike most guys coming off his type of injury, Perk's recovery is going to take a different and most likely quicker path. Basically, he just needs to be able to stand stoically in the paint for a few second at a time until Howard/Bynum can spike a hook shot off the back rim. Since he does need to worry about getting his explosion back or regaining the touch on his jumper, once the doctors clear him he will be able to contribute immediately.

Patrick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Patrick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Patrick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.