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Friday, November 14, 2008

38 Pitches: Schilling: Makes it easy..

Tear up that dated Schlieffen Plan…Schilling has a better attack plan!

I know the ‘anti’ Tek camp is big, and that’s fine, but at the end of the day his value is far beyond a measurable statistic and I think that’s what rubs so many wrong. You’ll know it when it’s gone, it will be a visibly absent thing.

Do you pay him 15 a year for 4 years, I don’t know but who gives a 36 year old catcher a 4 year deal? If there was ever a guy to get that deal you could argue this was the guy because you know beyond a shadow of a doubt he’ll be in better shape than any catcher in the game for however many years he gets. It really comes down to someone understanding how much of his contract is being paid for those ‘intangibles’ so many argue for, or against.

This guy is the consummate team first, play the game right 24/7 pro. Many don’t care about that aspect, and that’s fine too, there are a ton of utility players that play the same way, but they aren’t worth 15×4 or whatever. But those things matter inside a clubhouse where you inherit a family for 9 months a year. Those things, when absent, can wear a team down fast, but when present they are the things that help a team over the hump as well. This clubhouse has gained, in addition to immense young talent, an incredibly good and deep roster of players with many of those same traits. That bodes well for the coming years, and I would argue Jason is a huge part of that.

I am not saying sign him regardless, or let him walk at a certain price, what I am saying is that there is value here beyond AVG/OPS/HR/RBI that writers like the one quoted above will never comprehend, appreciate or acknowledge.

Repoz Posted: November 14, 2008 at 12:42 PM | 29 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: red sox

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   1. The Bones McCoy of THT Posted: November 14, 2008 at 01:19 PM (#3008957)
38 Pitches ... a subsidiary of Scott Boras Inc.

Best Regards

John
   2. OCD SS Posted: November 14, 2008 at 01:37 PM (#3008971)
Do you pay him 15 a year for 4 years, I don’t know but who gives a 36 year old catcher a 4 year deal?


Short answer: No way in helll. Not on the money, not on the years.

When a baseball player gets to the point where all he has to market are his off-field benefits to the team it is entirely unreasonable to expect to be paid like a star. When you are essentially providing something that isn't that much different than a coach I think you have to look at every million $ more you're making than as something other than an entitlement.

Tek is looking at more than one divorce in the near future, and I hope that the one with the Sox is done quick, neat, and as soon as possible.
   3. tfbg9 Posted: November 14, 2008 at 01:50 PM (#3008982)
Happy birthday, YOU MAGNIFICENT BASTARD!!!
   4. Big Ed Posted: November 14, 2008 at 01:52 PM (#3008983)
38 Pitches ... a subsidiary of Scott Boras Inc

No way. Schilling has trashed Mr. Boras plenty of times in the past. I expect him to stick up for his valued teammate. Don't attribute any more significance to this than that.
   5. Smiling Joe Hesketh Posted: November 14, 2008 at 01:53 PM (#3008984)
This guy is the consummate team first, play the game right 24/7 pro.

Except when he's b*tching to Francona about being pinch-hit for, or so busy chasing ##### all over Boston that his personal life collapses and he has to file for divorce from his wife and 3 kids in the middle of the season, which wouldn't help his preparation and intangibles any. I guess "playing the game right" means "being unable to catch up with a 89 MPH fastball."

Other than that, a consummate pro. Got it. What a load of crap.

We get it Schill. You like Tek. Great. Please stop anointing him for sainthood along the way.

There would have to be a TON of value elsewhere in Varitek's game to make up for 220/313/359. And I doubt there's enough to make him a positive player for 2009.

Varitek has been a good player for the Sox for many years. That period of production is now over. Sox should move heaven and earth in an attempt to upgrade the position. Signing Vartiek to another contract should be a last resort for this club, not a first.
   6. The Bones McCoy of THT Posted: November 14, 2008 at 02:14 PM (#3009005)
No way. Schilling has trashed Mr. Boras plenty of times in the past. I expect him to stick up for his valued teammate. Don't attribute any more significance to this than that.


True enough. Snark withdrawn.

Best Regards

John
   7. Chris Dial Posted: November 14, 2008 at 03:01 PM (#3009047)
We get it Schill. You like Tek. Great. Please stop anointing him for sainthood along the way.
I don't know. I liked it. He's saying it is hard to measure, but he is saying it matters, and he's saying it as someone who has been in the locker room. Maybe it does.
   8. The importance of being Ernest Riles Posted: November 14, 2008 at 03:11 PM (#3009061)
busy chasing ##### all over Boston that his personal life collapses and he has to file for divorce from his wife and 3 kids in the middle of the season

Did this actually happen?
   9. Guapo Posted: November 14, 2008 at 03:18 PM (#3009069)
My question is how someone who didn't throw a pitch for the Red Sox last year can opine on the fact that Varitek's offensive woes didn't affect his pitch calling/game preparation last year.

Not snark, genuninely wondering...
   10. The Marksist Posted: November 14, 2008 at 03:19 PM (#3009071)
Did this actually happen?


Pretty much.
   11. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: November 14, 2008 at 03:26 PM (#3009078)
People don’t know that he twice last year had a serious viral sickness. He was completely wiped out on two different occasions.


It's true that I didn't know that.

I can believe that going through a painful divorce and being ill could seriously effect Varitek's production. I'm probably the only one who thinks he'll have a dead cat bounce next year, but I really don't want the Red Sox to make some kind of crazy multi-year deal. I can't truly comprehend Varitek's value beyond what I see him do on the field and his stats, because I can't see it. However I can recognize that other players seem to think he has a lot of value aside from that stuff, but like Smilin Joe says, it would have to be a huge amount of value to make up for what he lacks at the plate.
   12. Nasty Nate Posted: November 14, 2008 at 03:39 PM (#3009097)
Isn't it possible that whatever catcher the Sox [potentially] get to replace 'Tek will have most of the same un-measurable and intangible skills? Do the other 29 teams start catchers with no leadership, no pitch-calling skills, etc? Why don't Schilling and others mention this possibility when discussing Tek?
It is possible for a catcher to have both intangibles AND tangibles, like 'Tek in his prime.
   13. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: November 14, 2008 at 04:00 PM (#3009112)
The obvious solution is a 2-year commitment (2/16?), with 2 team option years tied to PAs or games played, and some kind of agreement for continuing work with the team in a non-playing capacity. There is no way the Sox will pay anything close to $13 mil per though.
   14. SoSH U at work Posted: November 14, 2008 at 04:09 PM (#3009122)
Isn't it possible that whatever catcher the Sox [potentially] get to replace 'Tek will have most of the same un-measurable and intangible skills? Do the other 29 teams start catchers with no leadership, no pitch-calling skills, etc? Why don't Schilling and others mention this possibility when discussing Tek? It is possible for a catcher to have both intangibles AND tangibles, like 'Tek in his prime.


Sure, it's possible. But I don't hear most players talk about their catchers the same way Boston players (particularly pitchers) have spoken of Tek his entire time there. It's been a pretty consistent refrain. Obviously, as a Red Sox fan, I'm more likely to hear that kind of talk about him than some NL West catcher. But I've never heard Posada spoken of similar glowing terms, for instance.

I don't know what kind of on-field impact it has, if any. But Tek seems to be held in considerable regard by his teammates, moreso than just about any player in the game. I'm not about to automatically write that off.

Ultimately, I'm pretty much in agreement with ellsbury above.
   15. villageidiom Posted: November 14, 2008 at 04:59 PM (#3009225)
It's true that I didn't know that.

Through May: 823 OPS

June 1 to 11: 469 OPS
Missed 6/12-14
Next 12 games: 337 OPS
Next 12 games: 431 OPS

All Star "break" (remember, he was selected to the team)

Post ASB: 700 OPS

I remember hearing of two stomach bugs and strep during the season but I don't recall when they occurred. I think strep was around the games on 6/12 and 6/13, which were not Wakefield starts, but I don't know the timing of the other stuff.
   16. Smiling Joe Hesketh Posted: November 14, 2008 at 05:06 PM (#3009232)
Post ASB: 700 OPS

That breaks down into:

July: 581 OPS
Aug: 807
Sept/Oct: 586

Playoffs: 4 for 34, 2BB, 9K, 1 XBH.

Stomach bug theory doesn't work for me, unless he had ebola. He sucked in July, was decent in August, sucked in September, and then shockingly got even worse in the playoffs. Unless the bug made a reoccurance in September and October, I think its effects have been overstated.

He's all done as any type of decent hitter.
   17. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 14, 2008 at 05:18 PM (#3009261)
This clubhouse has gained, in addition to immense young talent, an incredibly good and deep roster of players with many of the same racial traits.



Fixed. I am bored with Tek - no capable replacement is going to be found(unfortunately) and he'll be back. Let's get back to the fun stuff and make up random #### again.
   18. SteveM. Posted: November 14, 2008 at 05:37 PM (#3009289)
Anyone who thinks that a dvorce won't mess with your head professionally has never been divorced.
   19. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: November 14, 2008 at 05:42 PM (#3009294)
ok, i'll stand up for tek. christ almighty: just sign him to a deal that will allow him to finish his career in boston. give him 3 years and 30 million. i don't give a #### about production at this point. it's a sentimental signing. he can sit on the bench.

as to
Stomach bug theory doesn't work for me, unless he had ebola. He sucked in July, was decent in August, sucked in September, and then shockingly got even worse in the playoffs. Unless the bug made a reoccurance in September and October, I think its effects have been overstated.


it's a long season and any catcher who has to catch multiple postseasons in a row should be expected to tire. it's not clear to me that playoff suckitude is related to the other suckitude. there's so much month to month variation, and he has so much career variation, that i don't know how to tell if he's done or not. i know one thing, at some point he'll just have to stop batting left-handed.
   20. jmurph Posted: November 14, 2008 at 06:06 PM (#3009315)
i don't give a #### about production at this point. it's a sentimental signing. he can sit on the bench.


I'm certainly resigned to this eventuality, but I don't have to be happy about it. I'm hoping for just two years (I called 2 years/16 million a while ago), but I wouldn't be shocked by 3. But we should all be able to admit that this won't be money well-spent.

They've been good at avoiding these sentimental contracts; it's a bummer they've met their match with the Cap'n.
   21. villageidiom Posted: November 14, 2008 at 06:30 PM (#3009344)
Stomach bug theory doesn't work for me, unless he had ebola. He sucked in July, was decent in August, sucked in September, and then shockingly got even worse in the playoffs. Unless the bug made a reoccurance in September and October, I think its effects have been overstated.

He's all done as any type of decent hitter.
Are you saying the stomach bug doesn't explain September and October, ergo the September and October Varitek is the real Varitek? Nice to see we're not cherry-picking.

And before I get accused of the same... What I'm saying is that his 2008 stats don't give us a clear picture of who the real Varitek is. Going into 2008 he was an OK-hitting aging catcher, and to me his 2008 stats do nothing to change that except age him a year. I don't care if his intangibles allow him to bend space and time so that every Boston pitch is a strike on the corners*, an OK-hitting aging catcher isn't justifiably signed for a ridiculous amount of dollars or years. I don't think he's done as a hitter, but I don't think his contract should be based on that belief.

* Though it would be cool if Tek could do that, the umpire still has to call it. What would be better: be able to will the ball to the corners of the zone, or manipulate the minds of the umpires to get the calls you want? I think I've been watching too much Heroes.
   22. Smiling Joe Hesketh Posted: November 14, 2008 at 06:57 PM (#3009376)
ok, i'll stand up for tek. christ almighty: just sign him to a deal that will allow him to finish his career in boston. give him 3 years and 30 million. i don't give a #### about production at this point. it's a sentimental signing. he can sit on the bench.

3/30 to sit on the bench. That's absolutely insane. No GM in their rational mind would do such a thing.

If they want Tek to sit on the bench they can sign him for 2/10 or something while they groom a young catcher and then commit to giving someone else the starting job. What they cannot do is accept the status quo as a plan for the future.
   23. karlmagnus Posted: November 14, 2008 at 08:15 PM (#3009465)
Tek's well past his sell-by date. Apart from declining production, he's responsible for much of the obnoxious "dirt-dog" atmosphere that made Boston intolerable for Manny and will seriously hinder their ability to acquire top quality talent, particularly African-American, Hispanic or intelligent, quirky talent, going forward.
   24. villageidiom Posted: November 14, 2008 at 08:23 PM (#3009471)
will seriously hinder their ability to acquire top quality talent, particularly African-American, Hispanic or intelligent, quirky talent, going forward.
But getting rid of him will mean the continued purging from the roster any players who were brought in by Duquette. I thought you wanted them to stop doing that.
   25. Mushroy Posted: November 14, 2008 at 08:34 PM (#3009484)
#23
You got any evidence to back that up? I've never heard Tek make any obnoxious cracker comments like Millar or Timlin. Seems to me you might be stereotyping the "gritty" white catcher...
And I'm speaking as someone who still loves Manny despite himself, so don't think I'm rushing to the defense of the dirt dogs. But just because the Boston media fawns all over a white player doesn't make him a bad guy, or problematic for minority teammates.
   26. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: November 14, 2008 at 09:01 PM (#3009506)
They've been good at avoiding these sentimental contracts; it's a bummer they've met their match with the Cap'n.


The Lowell contract seems a bit sentimental to me, but in his case I think it was more not really having other good options than sentiment. To be honest, I thought that 4/$40 Varitek contract was a sentimental deal, but it looks like it actually turned out to be a fair deal.
   27. OCD SS Posted: November 14, 2008 at 09:59 PM (#3009564)
I think the Lowell contract had a decent amount to do with the lack of other 3B options. I refuse to believe the Sox are stuck paying Tek $10M/yr for the next 3 years. If they give him that much money, he's going to play, and probably not as a back up. This is the time to cut the cord, quick and clean. Save the sentimentality for when he comes back to throw out a first pitch; if the Sox prolong this break up it's probably going to end a lot worse.

Given their matchup with Texas they should be able to get a young replacement, it's just a matter of getting the exact package worked out to both teams' satisfaction.
   28. rr Posted: November 14, 2008 at 10:04 PM (#3009567)
Do the Red Sox fans here think Epstein will really be a serious bidder for Teixeira? I read it around the net, but I am skeptical. I see Teixeira with NYY or LAA.
   29. nick swisher hygiene Posted: November 14, 2008 at 10:24 PM (#3009581)
Tek's fabled intangibles must not be reduced to the merely measurable....seriously, though, remember when people would argue that he was a better player than Posada? not that long ago....

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