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Sunday, December 10, 2006

Toronto Sun: Bell fires back at Ricciardi

Hey…we already had a Nutty Buddy thread!

After the Royals landed free-agent Gil Meche to a five-year, $55 million deal, Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi questioned Meche’s competitiveness.  “When a guy talks about coming to our place where he has a chance to win and compete against the Yankees and the Red Sox,” Ricciardi told USA Today, “and then he goes to a place like Kansas City, that’s an eye-opener.”

Royals manager Buddy Bell, among others in Kansas City, took offence.

“(Ricciardi) is an interesting guy for all that he’s done in the game,” Bell told the Kansas City Star. “He’s a little guy with a big mouth and all he does is whine. And you can write that. That’s the kind of crap in this game that drives me crazy. He knows nothing about our situation. You’ve got to be kidding me. Every time I hear this guy talk, all he’s doing is whining.”

Repoz Posted: December 10, 2006 at 03:43 AM | 90 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blue jays, royals

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   1. Honkie Kong Posted: December 10, 2006 at 03:58 AM (#2256809)
Buddy Bell aint someone I like, but he speaks the truth here. totally agree with him
   2. Toolsy McClutch Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:00 AM (#2256811)
I like JP, but he is a bit of a whiny bithc.
   3. Tom Poquette Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:06 AM (#2256815)
Love these cat fights. You know, when Barajas, Lilly, Adam Kennedy and Meche all turn down equal money, you better start looking at who is trying to sell that team to the player. Does JP go around telling prospective recruits that he's going to eat their children if they come to Toronto?
   4. Gaelan Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:07 AM (#2256817)
Well it probably wasn't smart for a GM to make that comment publicly. That being said I have read the exact sentiment in numerous places all over the internet.
   5. Jack Sommers Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:09 AM (#2256819)
After losing out in the Meche bidding and offering a four-year $40 million deal, Ricciardi said "we may have dodged a bullet with that one."

Ya know....if he worked for me, I would fire him on the spot. A week ago he is offering 40 million of my money to this pitcher, and a week later he comes up with this crap?

It's just bad business. Sorry. This is crap.
   6. Xander Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:09 AM (#2256820)
Buddy Bell is dead-on here. Play on playa.
   7. Kurt Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:17 AM (#2256827)
After losing out in the Meche bidding and offering a four-year $40 million deal, Ricciardi said "we may have dodged a bullet with that one."

For all the people confused about what "sour grapes" means - that's it, right there.
   8. Tom Poquette Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:19 AM (#2256828)
JP: "Can I buy you a drink?"
Babe: "No thanks"
JP: "Whore! Fat, ugly whore!"
   9. Bill McNeal Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:20 AM (#2256830)
Not only is Riccardi not acting professionally, maybe Meche is more competitive than Riccardi wishes, and he thinks TOR doesn't have much of a chance to win the AL East given the spending capabilities of their competition. It may be that KC wins the Central before TOR wins their division.
   10. E., Hinske Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:23 AM (#2256834)
That’s the kind of crap in this game that drives me crazy. He knows nothing about our situation.


Sure he does Buddy. You just signed Gil Meche. It's pretty obvious that you're not interested in competing.

I still think JP looks worse in all this for having an interest in Gil Meche.
   11. Garth found his way to daylight Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:33 AM (#2256841)
So long as he makes angry statements to keep the season interesting, he can bench Justin Huber all he likes.
   12. Garth found his way to daylight Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:51 AM (#2256854)
You just signed Gil Meche. It's pretty obvious that you're not interested in competing.

So losing a bidding war to a team disinterested in competition makes it pretty obvious that _____________________________ ?
   13. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:54 AM (#2256858)
Not only is Riccardi not acting professionally, maybe Meche is more competitive than Riccardi wishes, and he thinks TOR doesn't have much of a chance to win the AL East given the spending capabilities of their competition. It may be that KC wins the Central before TOR wins their division.

Given that the Royals finished 28 games out of third place and have zero talented players under 25 years old, I'm thinking the odds on that are rather long. Ricciardi certainly was tactless to say it, but every word of his comment was absolutely true.
   14. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:57 AM (#2256862)
Just to expand on that, though... if Ricciardi really thinks that players are going to react to that "compete against the Yankees and Red Sox" schtick, he's living in a dream world. Knowing what I do of him, I'm sure he doesn't actually believe it but he sure can sound like the jilted ex-girlfriend when he wants to.
   15. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:11 AM (#2256871)
Given that the Royals... have zero talented players under 25 years old

You're kidding me, right? Alex Gordon is one of the top five hitting prospects in baseball right now.
   16. Red Menace Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:14 AM (#2256875)
Thank you Kurt. I was going to point that out as well. Sour grapes gets misused as bitterness all the time. This is some real Aesopian sour grapes.
   17. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:16 AM (#2256877)
#8 was priceless.

I just want to state that I am also of the opinion that Mr. Riccardi is whiny.
   18. Brandon in MO (Yunitility Infielder) Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:17 AM (#2256878)
So, which Blue Jay will Meche throw at in the first KC/TOR game?
   19. Buster Olney the Lonely Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:38 AM (#2256890)
Babe: "No thanks"

Did Babe Ruth ever turn down a drink?
   20. Raoul Duke Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:42 AM (#2256892)
Well, maybe ouzo or some such shite . . .
   21. Rear Admiral Piazza Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:48 AM (#2256896)
Ricciardi should go. And it's not a reflection on Moneyball, Joe Morgan. It's a reflection on him running his mouth again and again about everything but the lousy a job he has been doing. May whatever gofer position JP gets be for the team that employs Shea Hillenbrand...
   22. J. Cross Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:08 AM (#2256906)
"Every time I hear this guy talk, all he’s doing is whining.”

This holds true for me as well. Just about every Ricciardi quote I hear is a whine. I had very high expectations for this guy headed into the Toronto job but it seems like he's all about complaining and excuse making.
   23. baudib Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:08 AM (#2256907)
Well at least JP is mking sure he will never get another GM job again.
   24. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:09 AM (#2256908)
Rear Admiral Piazza, may I? I'm playing Devil's advocate here, I don't hold all these against him, but...

- questions Meche's character
- angry at Barajas
- jerked around Zaun
- calls Keith Law an idiot after being backstabbed by him
- Cut Hillenbrand
- Don't fire manager or trade player after inappropriate fight
- call out 3-4-5 players, and rookie pitchers
- blames losing on Yankees payroll
- trades Koskie away for nothing, to his dismay
- jerks Aaron Hill around, saying this offseason he'd play 2b, SS, no 2b
- getting his main writer to question Burnett's motivation through the press after he didn't play through his "injury"

all in the last year or so. I know I'm missing some stuff.
   25. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:12 AM (#2256910)
JP as done a lot of good stuff though. He has his weaknesses. But there are definitely worse GM's, so I'm glad my team doesn't have one of those. I said to myself earlier I'd give JP one more offseason (This one) to make up my mind about him. I still have confidence in him, but during this offseason, I'm leaning away...
   26. Iwakuma Chameleon (jonathan) Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:20 AM (#2256911)
Ive always tried to stay positive because Ricciardi's a "Moneyball" guy that gets associated with the A's a lot, and that in a way reflects on us.



But seriously, dude's a little #####.
   27. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:24 AM (#2256913)
I think we should sign Tomokazu Ohka, he's better than Suppan and half the cost, and will eat those innings in the AL East.
   28. Gaelan Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:24 AM (#2256914)
If forced to choose between these comments and giving Jason Marquis 25 million dollars I'll take the inappropriate comments every time. The Blue Jays could do much, much worse. If/when Ricciardi gets fired I'm 90% sure the replacement will do a worse job.
   29. cardsfanboy Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:25 AM (#2256915)
- calls Keith Law an idiot after being backstabbed by him

why did it take a backstabbing to come up with something so obvious?
   30. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:29 AM (#2256919)
He's also an emotional guy. He sent down Frasor last year, one of our top relievers, after a bad outing. He always seems to trade guys away if they blow things: Schoeneweis, Hinske (bad trade, but it was a blemish on his record), Miguel Batista, Dave Bush.
   31. Raskolnikov Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:34 AM (#2256920)
Given that the Royals finished 28 games out of third place and have zero talented players under 25 years old, I'm thinking the odds on that are rather long. Ricciardi certainly was tactless to say it, but every word of his comment was absolutely true.

I disagree. I think that KC's future is brighter, both because of easier competition and because they have 2-3 genuine cornerstones to build on in the minors.
   32. baudib Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:37 AM (#2256922)
How many GMs have been in the job longer than JP without making the playoffs? It can't be many.
   33. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:45 AM (#2256926)
So maybe that's more reflective of the industry. GM's are fired to make a statement. Either the new ones win on luck, or they stumble upon a pattern setup by the old one.
   34. shozzlekhan Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:47 AM (#2256928)
Yeah, Bell's basically right.

Remember when JP attacked Batter's Box (Which might as well have been called the "JP Ricciardi Fan Club" at that time) for being too critical? The guy is just whine, whine, whine.
   35. greenback needs a ride, not ammo Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:49 AM (#2256931)
May whatever gofer position JP gets be for the team that employs Shea Hillenbrand...

Wacky hijinks could ensue if he worked for the same team as Luke Scott.
   36. Garth found his way to daylight Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:59 AM (#2256935)
I don't think anybody has grounds to defend Ricciardi. I mean, he made a pretty dick statement that makes him look whiny as well as pretty stupid. (There's a very easy way to dodge this type of bullet: DO NOT OFFER MECHE A HUGE DEAL.) I'm not saying that Ricciardi is a bad person, or even a bad GM, but in situations like this where you slip up, you've just got to cut bait.

Given that the Royals... have zero talented players under 25 years old

Wow.
   37. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:59 AM (#2256938)
I think we should sign Tomokazu Ohka, he's better than Suppan and half the cost, and will eat those innings in the AL East.

Ohka doesn't strike me as a guy who would cut it in the AL but it appears that more than one team from the AL is pursuing him. That said, I decided to take a look at how he's done against the AL since 2002:

In 71.2 IP, he's put up a 4.14 ERA with a 4.83 FIPS. That's respectable. But the thing that surprised me is the fact that Ohka has only walked 4 batters during that time, posting a 9.50 k/bb ratio. He gives up a lot of homers, 1.63 hr/9, but his WHIP is only 1.19 because he's only issuing 0.50 bb/9 during.

I don't know what any of this means.
   38. baudib Posted: December 10, 2006 at 07:00 AM (#2256939)
Um no GMs are fired because they fail. Baseball is an obvious meritocracy.
   39. Danny Posted: December 10, 2006 at 07:22 AM (#2256947)
How many GMs have been in the job longer than JP without making the playoffs? It can't be many.

Out of the 9 that qualify, only O'Dowd. The other 8 (Schuerholz, Ryan, Jocketty, Towers, Sabean, Cashman, Beane, and Stoneman) have all had a good deal of success.
   40. The George Sherrill Selection Posted: December 10, 2006 at 07:40 AM (#2256951)
Ricciardi sounds like needs a bithc-slapping.
   41. Jason Robar Posted: December 10, 2006 at 07:45 AM (#2256953)
Can't they both be right?

JP is whiny. But the Royals aren't going to be contending for the playoffs for at least another 3 years.

I think that KC's future is brighter, both because of easier competition

Haven't the last two AL representatives in the World Series come from the Central Division? Chicago, Detroit and Minnesota have all gone to the playoffs in the last two years, and Cleveland was a game away in 2005.

How many GMs have been in the job longer than JP without making the playoffs?

Dave Littlefield and Dan O'Dowd are two that come to mind.
   42. Flynn Posted: December 10, 2006 at 07:56 AM (#2256955)
Haven't the last two AL representatives in the World Series come from the Central Division? Chicago, Detroit and Minnesota have all gone to the playoffs in the last two years, and Cleveland was a game away in 2005.

That's variable quality though, no? TO's put up some decent teams, but they need another Red Sox meltdown to get to 2nd, much less qualify for the playoffs.
   43. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:03 AM (#2256956)
It's tougher long-term for Toronto, because while the Indians or White Sox may be on the peak of their up cycle right now, there is no down cycle in the AL East...the MFY and MF-Red Sox have unlimited money, they will perpetually be going at it. The Royals have two really good prospects, but I don't see their future as brighter. One team I do is the Devil Rays because they have such an amazing system. Dayton Moore though seems to have a brain...I'm not sure if the Rays have that yet.
   44. greenback needs a ride, not ammo Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:07 AM (#2256958)
I guess the world's come a long way when a team like the Devil Rays can hire a couple of BPro alum and there's uncertainty about their intelligence.
   45. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:14 AM (#2256960)
Whats BPro?
   46. Jason Robar Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:18 AM (#2256961)
That's variable quality though, no? TO's put up some decent teams, but they need another Red Sox meltdown to get to 2nd, much less qualify for the playoffs.

KC needs to improve their own team by 30 wins, and have 3 of Chicago, Detroit, Minnesota and Cleveland be worse than 90 wins. I'm not saying that it can't be done, but let's not say that KC is in a better position just because they don't have to face the Yankees and Red Sox.
   47. bads85 Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:22 AM (#2256963)
I think that KC's future is brighter, both because of easier competition and because they have 2-3 genuine cornerstones to build on in the minors.


I don't think the competition in the AL Central is easier than the AL East.
   48. A Random 8-Year-Old Eskimo Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:26 AM (#2256965)
I like JP, but he is a bit of a whiny bithc.

Yeah, but he's our whiny bithc.

The guy makes some dumb - okay, perhaps more than some - dumb comments. I think he's been right on a few of the situations where people have criticized him. I have no problems with how he handled the Hillenbrand mess (although, I have problems as to why Hillenbrand was on the Jays that year), the mentioning of the Yankees and Red Sox payroll (he overdoes it at time, but it's a legitimate and constant obstacle to the team's success since the late 90's) and Barajas was more in the wrong than JP over the contract mess.

However, I think the situation is clearly exacerbated by a media which, since day one, has had an agenda against JP. There's absoluately no denying that, aside from Jeff Blair, the baseball writers in this city have had it out for JP since he was hired. Some of these controversial and off-the-cuff comments are ones that I think would either be edited out of the story or dealt with a much more tactful manner in other cities.

If/when Ricciardi gets fired I'm 90% sure the replacement will do a worse job.

Even his biggest fans would admit he's not a top 3 GM in the game and you could make a strong case he's not in the top 10, although this offseason and handling the Wells situation well could change that dramatically. So, I don't think that statement's true, at all. And that, to me, is a much bigger problem than the fact he may sometimes be too candid or off-the-cuff in media interviews and public statements.
   49. baudib Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:31 AM (#2256967)
Is there any case that he's a top 10 GM?
   50. The George Sherrill Selection Posted: December 10, 2006 at 09:29 AM (#2256972)
"JP: He's Better Than Bavasi"
   51. Michael Posted: December 10, 2006 at 09:33 AM (#2256974)
Is there any case that he's a top 10 GM

I'd say yes there is. I think he's about 12th or so overall. So give him a bit of benefit of the doubt or his slightly better GMs a little bit of a knock and he's in the top 10. He definitely has a harder job than most GMs competing versus NYY and BOS. And depending on how much credit you give to people based on the degree of difficulty of their job then you may put him in the top 10.

I think one of the earlier posters above had it right when he said that both people above are right. JP is right that KC is nowhere near competing, arguably KC is the 2nd least competitve team in the majors (ahead of only Montreal). JP is right that Meche choose KC for the money not because he "wanted a chance to win". Personally that doesn't seem like a terrible idea to me since Meche isn't very good and a $55 million dollar payday seems like a great contract for him.

But everybody recognized that JP is whiny in his statements. I think one of the posters who mentioned the fact that the TO media largely hate JP and have from the begining doesn't help him as he gets no breaks in his coverage and is often treated badly therefore.

I think JP is also right that he did dodge a bullet by not signing Meche. But that seems an unwise thing to admit in public and reflects badly on you if you did actually sign him.
   52. Gaelan Posted: December 10, 2006 at 09:53 AM (#2256976)
Even his biggest fans would admit he's not a top 3 GM in the game and you could make a strong case he's not in the top 10, although this offseason and handling the Wells situation well could change that dramatically. So, I don't think that statement's true, at all. And that, to me, is a much bigger problem than the fact he may sometimes be too candid or off-the-cuff in media interviews and public statements.


But the guys that are better than JP all have jobs. If JP is fired he'll be replaced by some random guy or, even worse, some retread GM who has already proven that he can't do the job. I'm 90% confident that JP is better than a random baseball executive and I'm 100% sure he's better than a proven baseball guy.
   53. Justin T's pasta pass was not revoked Posted: December 10, 2006 at 10:01 AM (#2256977)
What exactly has JP done to get any consideration as irreplaceable? Anyone could sign the FAs he does. The Blue Jays farm system is not a strength, and I don't think it has been while he's been there. If it was, it was with players on hand when he got the job. He's won some trades, but I don't think he has fleeced anyone.

I think he lacks imagination, and any sort of long range plan. Just sign guys and cross your fingers and close your eyes.
   54. Michael Posted: December 10, 2006 at 11:41 AM (#2256986)
I think he lacks imagination, and any sort of long range plan.

I think you are wrong here. The reason he got the job, and what he did well, was developing a long range plan. The basic plan was stop shooting for an OK high 70 wins team and rebuild to compete in 2006-2008 when, hopefully, the Red Sox and Yankees players would start breaking down/still being paid and when the product of his drafting would join the Toronto core and when you could overpay on a few FA simultaneously to fill the gaps rather than always only having one. It was a good plan. He did a good job getting rid of some of the early dead weight. Someone with the Jays (and maybe it's JP, maybe it's Godfrey, maybe it's Ted himself) has done a good job at slowly increasing payroll to improve the team, not merely increasing it for its own sake. Some of the later execution of the plan hasn't been great. And I think his trading record of players is a net negative. And his "emotional" handling of media/players/etc. hasn't been great. And I'm not convinced by his free agent moves (although overpaying on multiple players at once is better if it pushes you near/in the playoffs and this year's market is making the BJ/AJ deals look much better).

The Jays are in a better position where they are now than they were when he took them over. But not in as near as good a position as they'd be if he had executed the long range plan better. But lack of long range plan isn't the issue.
   55. no neck Posted: December 10, 2006 at 02:00 PM (#2257004)
I don't care if Ricciardi is right or not, he is completely out of line.
   56. Margo Adams FC Posted: December 10, 2006 at 04:33 PM (#2257089)
to our place where he has a chance to win


Toronto's chance of winning the AL East next year is only marginally better than Kansas City's chance of winning the AL East. With Royce and Towers in the fold, you're on the brink of something or other for sure, J.P. But I don't think it's contention.
   57. Danny Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:21 PM (#2257119)
Is there any case that he's a top 10 GM?

Actually, I think if you paste all of your posts in this thread together, you've almost made a case for him.
   58. Cowboy Popup Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:27 PM (#2257126)
"Is there any case that he's a top 10 GM?"

Guys I'd rather have: Byrnes, Towers, Stoneman, Beane, Melvin, Jocketty, Williams, Ryan, Shapiro, Dombrowski, Schuerholz, Minaya, Cashman, and Epstein.

Guys I could see taking over him: Colletti, Daniels, and Moore. I'm probably missing someone too.
   59. jwb Posted: December 10, 2006 at 05:44 PM (#2257138)
I don't think anybody has grounds to defend Ricciardi. I mean, he made a pretty dick statement that makes him look whiny as well as pretty stupid. (There's a very easy way to dodge this type of bullet: DO NOT OFFER MECHE A HUGE DEAL.)

Well, he could have said something boring like, "We like Gil Meche, both as a pitcher and as a person, and we made him a fair offer, but we weren't willing to guarantee that fifth year. I wish him the best of luck in Kansas City, except for the one or two starts a season when he is pitching against us. Have you seen his home/road home run splits? Moving from Safeco to Kauffman? Man, that could get ugly in a hurry and stay that way for HALF A FREAKIN' DECADE! Uhh, Richard, don't write that last part down. By the way, your wife called and said she urgently needs to get in touch with you. Where were we? Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, and sometimes it rains."

Some of these controversial and off-the-cuff comments are ones that I think would either be edited out of the story or dealt with a much more tactful manner in other cities.

Like Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Pittsburgh, or Kansas City?
   60. winnipegwhip Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:04 PM (#2257157)
Riccardi can whine all he wants about not being in an easy division but when it comes to big vs small markets the Jays should shut up. The Jays have a market of over 30 million people (they control all the Canadian sports media outlets when regarding baseball). Any lack of interest in this team in Toronto and nationwide is the result of poor marketing and bad baseball management over the last decade. Those two factors have not changed and the results will more than likely stay the same.
   61. baudib Posted: December 10, 2006 at 06:27 PM (#2257170)
The basic plan was stop shooting for an OK high 70 wins team and rebuild to compete in 2006-2008 when, hopefully, the Red Sox and Yankees players would start breaking down/still being paid and when the product of his drafting would join the Toronto core and when you could overpay on a few FA simultaneously to fill the gaps rather than always only having one.


When was it ever the plan in Toronto to shoot for a high 70-win team? Toronto in the five years BJP averaged 83 wins per year. They've averaged 80 wins per year since.

J.P. made some nice little moves early, finding guys like Cat and Reed Johnson. Since then, though, he's done nothing that any average or even below-average GM could easily do: make some middling free agent moves and make some middling trades.

Really he's done little to nothing to improve the talent base. What the Jays have accomplished in J.P.'s tenure is largely built on the pieces he inherited. Halladay, Wells and Rios are the three most important players on this team. He cleared out the dead weight? OK he got Mondesi off the roster, which was a good thing, and got a couple of useful years out of Ted Lilly for Shannon Stewart. But he also let Carlos Delgado, Chris Carpenter, Felipe Lopez, Esteban Loiaza and Kelvim Escobar get out of town for zero return, and somehow under J.P., a couple of nice-looking 24-year-old hitters like Josh Phelps and Jayson Werth were parlayed into nothing.

And really, if you are a fan of this team, the very least he could have done was secure the future of the team's best player before he hit free agency.
   62. Garth found his way to daylight Posted: December 10, 2006 at 08:51 PM (#2257256)
KC needs to improve their own team by 30 wins, and have 3 of Chicago, Detroit, Minnesota and Cleveland be worse than 90 wins. I'm not saying that it can't be done, but let's not say that KC is in a better position just because they don't have to face the Yankees and Red Sox.

Toronto needs to have George Steinbrenner lose all of his money, the Red Sox decide that paying for championships is no longer fun, the Orioles to continue to blunder their way into the next decade, and the Devil Rays to have half of their elite prospects killed. I'm not saying it can't be done, either, but I'm not sure we can say Toronto is in a better position merely because they're not trying to crack a 4-wide horse race.
   63. GregD Posted: December 10, 2006 at 09:13 PM (#2257280)
Sabermetrics in organized baseball will be mature when its supporters can feel free to celebrate the firing of sabermetric-friendly GMs who are also bad GMs. Ricciardi may or may not be that guy, but he is sure showing the signs. A bad GM who uses sabermetrics is still a bad GM.
   64. rr Posted: December 10, 2006 at 09:23 PM (#2257289)
I think Ricciardi has some strengths as a GM, and he is good copy.

But, I think "vanilla" is the way to go with public quotes when you are in a high-profile authority position. If Ricciardi were working for ESPN or Si.com or whatever, this stuff would be cool. Gets people yapping in the off-season. And, there may be truth in it.

If I owned the Jays, though, I'd tell him to zip it up.

And, I kind of like Bell calling him out on it, for the entertainment value, and, for, in effect, sticking up for KC's new pitcher.
   65. Rally Posted: December 10, 2006 at 10:18 PM (#2257360)
As Baudib points out, calling the pre - JP team a high 70 win team is revisionist history. They were a mid 80's win team. Its a minor point, because either is a 3rd place team, but lets stick to the facts.

There was some early hope for JP, when he was able to drastically reduce the payroll without hurting the team much on the field. But now he's brought the payroll back up without really improving the team. Paying anything above league minimum for Royce Clayton and even being interested in Gil Meche are not good signs. His drafts haven't brought very much young talent into the mix.

In situations like Barajas, regardless of what really happened he should be keeping his mouth shut. Same with Meche. If I were the owner it would be about time to try another direction.
   66. MSI Posted: December 10, 2006 at 11:29 PM (#2257440)
I think many are borderline, as I am, on JP. AFter they lose next season, it'll be a lot more polarized. I can hear the chants forming, "Fire JP, fire JP..."
   67. Ozzie's gay friend Posted: December 11, 2006 at 01:05 AM (#2257497)
The Royals are in a much better position than the Jays, largely because they don't have JP as a GM.

By the end of next year they should have a better, cheaper, younger offense, a much better defense, and Meche as their only long term commitment.
They have a bunch of young pitchers, prospects to deal and $ to spend.

Oh, and their division is a 100 times easier, botht he twins and white sox are falling, and the indains will probably never put it together.
   68. Mister High Standards Posted: December 11, 2006 at 02:15 AM (#2257553)
The reason he got the job, and what he did well, was developing a long range plan.


Was this the long term plan that said the Jays could win on a small payroll, then flip flopped once he got the job and said you can't win without more money - and has done nothing but whine about money for 2 seasons? That long range plan?
   69. Random Transaction Generator Posted: December 11, 2006 at 04:06 AM (#2257645)
The Jays have a market of over 30 million people (they control all the Canadian sports media outlets when regarding baseball).

That's silly.

It's like saying the Braves have a market of over 250 million people because TBS reaches almost all the major media markets in the US.

In Vancouver, they watch just as many Seattle games as they do Blue Jay games.
And Boston games are probably more popular in the Maritimes than Jays games.
Minnesota has a nice fan base in western Ontario and the prairies.

SportsNetOntario (the home of the Toronto Blue Jays) broadcasts many baseball games during the season that have nothing to do with the Blue Jays. The various regional versions of SportsNet (East, Central, West, Pacific) broadcast different baseball games all the time (never involving the Jays).
TSN (the largest sports network in Canada) broadcasts the ESPN Sunday Night game every week (never involving the Blue Jays).
   70. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: December 11, 2006 at 02:30 PM (#2257806)
It may be over-reaching to call the Blue Jays' market 30 million people, but it's also not reasonable to call it anything but a large market. Its population is about 4.5 million, Ontario's population is about 12 million. And it's not small matter to have a lot of games broadcast to 30 million people, whether they also get other games or not. Ricciardi's whining about market size just fosters an atmosphere of defeatism, and makes him look bad.
   71. Dr. Vaux Posted: December 11, 2006 at 02:40 PM (#2257811)
And when the team was good in the late '80s and early '90s, the market really was national. If it got good again, then that national market would be available again. They'll have no trouble whatsoever affording this payroll, or even a $100 million one, if the team is in serious contention. But if it isn't, and chances are it won't be, they'll probably pull it down again. The Blue Jays are one of those franchises that should do well from time to time in order for baseball to be truly healthy. Unfortunately, the Yankees and Red Sox, two other such franchises, are in the same division. What's really necessary is some sort of re-alignment that puts Toronto in a different division, perhaps the National League if necessary. They could compete with the Mets year-in and year-out, but not both Boston and New York. I wonder if Toronto (or Baltimore, for that matter) could do something like pay the Marlins $100 million to switch divisions with them. That would bridge the gap for the Marlins in their quest for local ballpark funding--the last couple of plans have been short by only about that much--and they wouldn't really care what division they were in as long as they got their cash cow built. Bud would have to sign off on it, but there would really be no reason not to, unless he'd be concerned about precedent, but it seems like a unique situation.
   72. Slinger Francisco Barrios (Dr. Memory) Posted: December 11, 2006 at 02:44 PM (#2257814)
However, I think the situation is clearly exacerbated by a media which, since day one, has had an agenda against JP.

How dare they quote him!

botht he twins and white sox are falling

I'll give you the rabbit's-foot White Sox, but the Twins are falling? Last year they had their most victories since 1970 and their best Pyth since 1991.

the indains will probably never put it together

Would you bet on the Royals putting it together first? <u>Really</u>? Remember, Buddy Bell is still their manager.
   73. Stop Oppressing Zonk by Investigating His Heroes Posted: December 11, 2006 at 03:11 PM (#2257835)
What's JP so upset about?

Royce Clayton was more than happy to take his money, wasn't he?
   74. Schtoopo Posted: December 11, 2006 at 04:33 PM (#2257909)
J.P.'s been a huge disappointment. His long term plan switched midway through his tenure when he realized the farm system sucked. Until then, it had been to get rid of the big contracts and build from within. Then all of a sudden he realizes the farm system sucks, so he starts the "can't win without a $100 million payroll" and starts signing/trading for high priced vets. In a year or two (coincidentally just when his contract will be expiring) this team is going to look really awful.
   75. winnipegwhip Posted: December 11, 2006 at 06:32 PM (#2258023)
In Vancouver, they watch just as many Seattle games as they do Blue Jay games.
And Boston games are probably more popular in the Maritimes than Jays games.
Minnesota has a nice fan base in western Ontario and the prairies.

SportsNetOntario (the home of the Toronto Blue Jays) broadcasts many baseball games during the season that have nothing to do with the Blue Jays. The various regional versions of SportsNet (East, Central, West, Pacific) broadcast different baseball games all the time (never involving the Jays).
TSN (the largest sports network in Canada) broadcasts the ESPN Sunday Night game every week (never involving the Blue Jays).



Your arguments are based upon the idea that all other spheres of broadcasting are exclusively full of a particular teams fans. That isn't so in Canada or elsewhere. But when the Jays agree to a television deal they agree with networks which are exposing the product to a market of 30 million plus. Granted other teams have occasional games broadcast into the Canadian market, but the Canadian market belongs to Canada exclusively.

Granted other teams may have made inroads in regards to interest in Canada but it is partly due to Jays mismanagement. The Jays have not given the casual baseball fan any reason to be interested in that team over the last few years.
   76. baudib Posted: December 11, 2006 at 06:42 PM (#2258036)
I'm actually curious as to what makes J.P. a sabermetric GM. Is he a sabermetric GM because he was mentioned in Moneyball? Is it that he gets up every morning and drones, "On-base percentage is life"? It's difficult to locate which moves, at least recently, were sabermetrically inspired.
   77. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 11, 2006 at 06:50 PM (#2258039)
"I'm actually curious as to what makes J.P. a sabermetric GM."

He's not. We held a vote and kicked him out of the club when he signed Hillenbrand.
   78. Slinger Francisco Barrios (Dr. Memory) Posted: December 11, 2006 at 07:28 PM (#2258072)
We held a vote and kicked him out of the club when he signed Hillenbrand.

That was a mistake. He was (all together now)...

EXPLOITING A MARKET INEFFICIENCY
   79. Rally Posted: December 11, 2006 at 07:53 PM (#2258096)
I'm actually curious as to what makes J.P. a sabermetric GM.

He used to work for Billy Beane. That's all it takes.
   80. Stop Oppressing Zonk by Investigating His Heroes Posted: December 11, 2006 at 07:53 PM (#2258098)
He's not. We held a vote and kicked him out of the club when he signed Hillenbrand....

And he lost all clubhouse "guest" priveleges when he signed Clayton... on purpose.
   81. Rally Posted: December 11, 2006 at 07:55 PM (#2258100)
Hmmm...Maybe signing Clayton is a genius move, exploiting a new market inefficiency! Every time Royce Clayton steps on the field he moves you that much closer to getting the #1 pick overall next season.
   82. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 11, 2006 at 08:01 PM (#2258102)
I'm not kidding. If anyone finds that old "Jays sign Hillenbrand" thread, there's a proposal and a vote and everything...
   83. Stop Oppressing Zonk by Investigating His Heroes Posted: December 11, 2006 at 08:05 PM (#2258103)
I don't know if that's a market inefficiency though... My gut -- and yes, saying that is enough to have to spend time alone in the sauna room with Joe Sheehan as punishment -- tells me that there is no shortage of crappy 'out-machines'.... though maybe 'out-machines' with vastly overrated defensive reputations might be a harder to find. I mean, you ARE looking at three variables coming together"


1. Must be awful offensively.

2. Must be bad defensively.

3. Must somehow have reputation for being 'good' defensively.

I think only Neifi Perez really fits in that club... though, if St. Rey keeps sliding, he may soon join the club.
   84. Stop Oppressing Zonk by Investigating His Heroes Posted: December 11, 2006 at 08:15 PM (#2258109)
There's an abbreviated vote in the TO, but it appears there were electronic voting screen problems, so I think the vote is still under recount.
   85. A Random 8-Year-Old Eskimo Posted: December 11, 2006 at 08:29 PM (#2258121)
How dare they quote him!

Excellent retort. Whether or not this is the best example, the Toronto print media, aside from Jeff Blair, hates the man. Have you never read a Richard Griffin column? The man criticized the Frank Thomas signing partly on the basis it meant the Jays would have no team speed and suggested they should have signed Hillenbrand again.

Or maybe you think "The White Jays" was journalism at its finest.
   86. A Random 8-Year-Old Eskimo Posted: December 11, 2006 at 08:33 PM (#2258126)
"The White Jays" was Geoff Baker's piece, but he was another in the anti-JP school. He's since moved out to cover the Mariners for one of the Seattle papers.
   87. kwarren Posted: January 07, 2007 at 10:17 PM (#2275972)
- questions Meche's character
- angry at Barajas
- jerked around Zaun
- calls Keith Law an idiot after being backstabbed by him
- Cut Hillenbrand
- Don't fire manager or trade player after inappropriate fight
- call out 3-4-5 players, and rookie pitchers
- blames losing on Yankees payroll
- trades Koskie away for nothing, to his dismay
- jerks Aaron Hill around, saying this offseason he'd play 2b, SS, no 2b
- getting his main writer to question Burnett's motivation through the press after he didn't play through his "injury"

all in the last year or so. I know I'm missing some stuff.



Even more damaging especially with a payroll limited franchise.

- deals Bush and Gross for Overbay (when Colorado was willing to deal Shealy for a 'C' pitching propect) and Frank Thomas and Piazza were available for 500 k

'- deals O. Hudson, Batista, and ultimately Koske for Glaus (who refused to DH) and a huge unnecessary payroll increase.

- signs Benjie Molina for $5M when Piazza was avaialble for 500 k

- declined to deal Lilly to the Mets for D. Wright because he had already signed Hinske to a long-term deal to play 3B

- deals Felipe Lopex, Alex Gonzalez, and Izturis out of town for nothing and then ends up using McDonald as the everyday shortstop...who he has since upgraded to Clayton. WOW.

- does not offer Chris Carpenter any kind of a deal

- signed Towers to a $5.2 M 2-year deal, after a particularly lucky season. I guess he's one of those who believes that there is no luck in ERA stats.

- Signed Schoenweiss to a $6 M two year deal

- severely over-worked Chacin in 2005 and then kept him in prefenerence to Bush in the Overbay deal
   88. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 07, 2007 at 11:20 PM (#2275988)
Wow, that 2005 Hillenbrand thread brings up some memories.

Billy Koch, what happened to him? I used to think he was really good.
   89. danjulien Posted: January 08, 2007 at 12:05 AM (#2276013)
deals Bush and Gross for Overbay (when Colorado was willing to deal Shealy for a 'C' pitching propect) and Frank Thomas and Piazza were available for 500 k

Let's not forget the ever important Taubenheim/Jackson swap that the Jays probably lost. It's not like Bush almost over-performed Overbay, sorry what's that? 36-30.1 VORP? Well it's not like the Jays needed a starter with Towers and Chacin...what's that 8 ERA? Chacin injury? Oi...

deals O. Hudson, Batista, and ultimately Koske for Glaus (who refused to DH) and a huge unnecessary payroll increase.

Koskie AND most of his contract! Not like Hudson's VORP was better than Glaus' last year...oh wait it was...it's ok though because Adams and Hill are the future of the Jays. Adams can't make a throw to first? He's starting 2007 in AAA?

You forgot trading Eric Hinske for nothing...and then badly needing a CI/CO type guy for 2007. Oh well, the all middle infield bench should be sweet...
   90. Daryn Posted: January 08, 2007 at 01:07 AM (#2276031)
Billy Koch, what happened to him? I used to think he was really good.

He and his family got Morgellan's Disease, which made them all crazy.

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