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Sunday, February 03, 2008

SFGate: Ratto: Giants in worse shape than frugal A’s

walking down the street
carrying a baseball bat
I think I smell a…Ratto

The Giants, on the other hand, have ridden their strategy of flogging Bonds and the ballpark until they can give no more, and finally, eight years later, Bonds is gone and the park has now been seen by anyone on the planet who wants to see it. There is no more novelty to flog here (the All-Star Game came and went, and with it the blackjack of tying special-event tickets to season tickets), which means that the Giants are quite likely going to drop below 3 million in attendance for the first time since 1999 - a 10 percent drop, minimum, for one of the game’s great revenue cows.

But oddly, the A’s end up faring better here because their far lower revenues mean that they will get even more money from the MLB revenue-sharing fund. I mean, if you can’t win and fill your building, the revenue-sharing system means there comes a point where you’re just as well off not drawing at all. That knowledge makes Beane’s decision to start from scratch even more palatable to the change-sorters in the Oakland front office.

Repoz Posted: February 03, 2008 at 05:16 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: athletics, giants

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   1. Ennder Posted: February 03, 2008 at 05:27 AM (#2682607)
My personal opinion is that the Giants have the worst franchise in baseball because of Sabean. His poor choices has made them a large market failure instead of a rebuilding one.
   2. slothinator Posted: February 03, 2008 at 05:46 AM (#2682611)
As much fun as it is laugh at the local fanbase and media here applauding Sabean's efforts, he doesn't deserve all of the blame. Yes, he's made some really bad trades (acquiring Pierznynski, dealing Accardo), signed some poor free agents to support Bonds (Vizquel, Alou, Klesko, Aurilia), and failed to develop any everyday players - wow, he's been bad. Anyway, some of the blame needs to be dumped on McGowan for letting him run the franchise into the ground.

Unfortunately, by the time ownership realizes what has been done and cans Sabean, it is going to be too late. Well, it's already too late; now it's just a matter of much longer McGowan is going to let this continue.
   3. Robert S. Posted: February 03, 2008 at 05:54 AM (#2682612)
I'm thankful the Giants and Dodgers haven't turned into the Yankees West and Red Sox West yet. It's probably just a matter of time, though.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: February 03, 2008 at 09:37 AM (#2682637)
Bonds (Vizquel, Alou, Klesko, Aurilia)

Moises Alou? OK, he was hurt, just 221 games, but OPS+ of 138 and 132 for $13 M. That ain't bad at all and the least of Sabean's worries. Vizquel has also been fine. And Klesko cost under $2 M so he doesn't even count. Aurilia I'll grant you was too much for too little.

Mainly it really does come down to an inability to produce offensive talent (and maybe an unwillingness to spend more of the gobs of revenue on payroll). That led them to rely on mid-priced FAs for the starters and gave them absolutely awful benches.

The Giants were rarely (if ever) in a good position to trade a good veteran for prospects either. Jeff Kent maybe they could have moved but only at huge cost to the team at the time.

My mind still boggles at the notion of Bonds drawing 120 IBB in a season.
   5. Russ Posted: February 03, 2008 at 01:22 PM (#2682658)
My personal opinion is that the Giants have the worst franchise in baseball because of Sabean.

This is just not true. Until further evidence presents itself, the team that has not had a season above .500 since 1992 remains the worst franchise in baseball. Full stop.
   6. Excel Hearts Choi Posted: February 03, 2008 at 01:54 PM (#2682663)
IIRC, didn't Sabean have a good draft this year? This article states that Sabean has had lousy first-round drafts in the past, so might as well let them go as compensation for his free agent signings. So, assuming my assumption is correct, did he get lucky this past draft?
   7. calhounite Posted: February 03, 2008 at 02:29 PM (#2682670)
what's the complaint?

STOPPED using decrepit old vets as placeholders exclusively

speckling in quad a rooks
   8. Rich Rifkin I Posted: February 03, 2008 at 07:13 PM (#2682780)
If you believe Keith Law's analysis -- I don't -- the Giants have one of the best minor league systems in all of baseball.
   9. slothinator Posted: February 03, 2008 at 10:00 PM (#2682891)
#4 - I agree that individually the signings were not that bad for the most part. It's more about the overall philosophy of trying to remain competitive by surrounding an aging Bonds with aging, past their prime vets. They could have let Durham walk, but they brought him back. The Matt Morris for Rajai Davis trade would look even better if Davis wasn't going to have to fight Dave Roberts for PT - until Roberts hits the DL anyway.

The problem for Sabean is that he appears to be switching up the plan by letting Bonds and Feliz go, and giving younger players (Frandsen, Ortmeier, maybe Davis and Schierlotz) a chance. Only these guys really aren't that good, and I doubt Sabean is going to be around long enough to get the chance to rebuild this thing. Given his track record for developing players, that is probably the best thing for the Giants.
   10. Pete Toms Posted: February 03, 2008 at 10:21 PM (#2682900)
# 6 - Can we with any consistent accuracy judge the results of a Rule IV draft < 1 yr after the fact? I'm not saying some can't do it consistently, but I honestly don't know. How evolved is scouting / player development? Or is it still pretty much a shot in the dark like it's always been - even pre Sandy Alderson?

I want Voros to weigh in on this as he was employed by the Red Sox to study the amateur draft ( is that a misrepresentation? )

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