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  • Inefficient Managing of "Dollars and Years"

    In Twinsland, this offseason has been marked by a couple of trades that have been embraced by the community and a couple of free agent acquisitions that have been viciously attacked by a large portion of the fan base.

    Most of us love what Terry Ryan did with the Twins' only marketable surplus, center fielders. Moving Denard Span for Alex Meyer and then flipping Ben Revere for Vance Worley and Trevor May were classic Ryan moves, taking advantage of competitive teams' desire to win now in exchange for a youth movement.

    On the flip side of that coin, we've seen some questionable handling of the free agent market by the Twins front office. After losing out on the Baker sweepstakes early in the offseason, it appears that the front office reacted rashly and offered up two years to Kevin Correia, whose stat line last season is frighteningly close to that of a certain Jason Marquis in 2011 (88 ERA+ for Marquis for the Padres, 87 ERA+ for Correia for the Pirates). Before I flog that already bloodied horse for the thousandth time on this site, let's take a look at another part of the Twins roster that was completely ignored:

    The middle infield.

    Last season, Brian Dozier posted some rather abysmal numbers for the team (.234/.271/.332) before being sent back down to the minors to regain his stroke (and fielding, and patience, and probably a bit of his sanity). He was replaced by Pedro Florimon, who hasn't authoritatively hit a baseball since playing as a teenager in the Dominican Republic. They are coupled with Jamey Carroll, veteran steward of middle infields across MLB for the past decade. While I like Carroll as a player and think he brings a very steady hand to an organization that - dons Hat of Positivity - has scuffled with their middle infield options since the departure of JJ Hardy and Jason Bartlett, it cannot be ignored that Carroll is entering his age 39 season as a middle infielder, an area of baseball where very few players make it out of their mid 30s as productive players.

    All in all, Carroll would be a great player to have on a competitive team. He's steady, gets on base at a rather good clip, and is a nearly perfect player to come off the bench and spell the starters up the middle of the diamond. Which brings me to a few issues:

    1. The Twins aren't competitive, particularly in the middle infield. That means Carroll, like Nick Punto before him, is not being used in his natural role as a bench player with versatility.

    2. If Jamey Carroll receives 401 plate appearances in 2013, the Twins are on the hook for a $2 million player option in 2014. Given the Twins, uh, lack of expected production in the middle infield spots in 2013, those 401 plate appearances are nearly guaranteed, barring an injury to Jamey.

    3. The Twins have payroll flexibility. A lot of flexibility, as their adjusted 2013 payroll is on par with their payroll in the final years of the Metrodome.

    Most everyone agrees that the free agent market for the middle infield was lacking in quality players but that doesn't mean the cupboard was entirely bare and the Twins need middle infield help nearly as much as they need starting pitching. Despite that fact, the Twins failed to pursue any of the free agents available to them. Which, in turn, means that the Twins are likely to be forced to pay a 40-year-old Jamey Carroll $2 million in 2014. Add in the second year of the Correia contract at $5.5 million and you're looking at $7.5 million committed to large question marks in 2014. That's nearly 10% of the 2013 payroll as it stands now. Add in the rather inexplicable contract to Drew Butera, a historically bad hitter, and that number jumps over 10% of payroll.

    Is this guaranteed to be a failure by the Twins? No, most certainly not. Carroll is a quality player (right now, anyway) and there's a chance Correia will earn his money.

    But that's not the point, is it? The point is that a mid-market team such as the Twins has to be using their resources as intelligently as possible to fill in the gaps left by their minor league system at an above-average rate. By nearly anyone's standard, using 10% of their payroll to field a below average National League pitcher and a 40-year-old middle infielder is not the smartest use of available resources.

    By doing nothing to shore up the middle infield, Ryan is essentially writing off $2 million in 2014 that could have gone to a younger player that could help the middle infield enormously and wouldn't be such a risk to decline overnight as they pass the start of their fourth decade on planet earth. A 29-year-old Ronny Cedeno just signed with the Cardinals for $1.15 million after posting a .259/.332/.410 shortened season with the Mets in 2012. Kelly Johnson, 31 years old, was just snapped up by the Rays after posting a .225/.313/.365 line for the Blue Jays and is just two years removed from a .284/.370/.496 line with the Diamondbacks.

    None of these options are great ones; far from it. But given the wide-open nature of the Twins middle infield going into 2013, their obvious ability to spend some of that money, and the looming player option for Carroll, wouldn't it have been prudent to add another player to the mix in hopes that another body gives you a better chance to field a competitive team while also relieving you of being forced into a player option for 2014 that you may want to avoid?

    It's only $2 million. I realize that, yes. On the other hand, it's $2 million that isn't being used in the best way possible by the front office.

    And, unfortunately for Twins fans, that seems to be a recurring theme through this offseason.
    This article was originally published in blog: Inefficient Managing of "Dollars and Years" started by Brock Beauchamp
    Comments 118 Comments
    1. CDog's Avatar
      CDog -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThePuck View Post
      The last three big ST battles we had...or at least that I can remember:

      2008 ST battle for CF: When Gomez 'won' the CF battle, Span had better numbers.
      2010 ST battle for 3B: Harris out played Punto. Punto won. You remember. Punto is my starting shortstop (Twins trade for Hardy)...um, okay, Punto is my starting 2B (Twins sign Hudson)...um, ok Punto and Harris will battle for 3B. Oh, surprise surprise, Punto 'wins'
      2011 rotation battle with supposedly six quality starters but only 5 spots. The guy who had the best ST ERA (Slowey) was the one who ended up out of the rotation.
      This comes up a fair amount, so I figured I'd finally pose the question(s): Is it possible that the winner shouldn't necessarily be the person who ends up with the "better numbers?"

      Could it be that the multitudes of professional baseball coaches of the highest level, who are watching almost every second of Spring Training, see more than the (relatively tiny sample of) numbers convey? That perhaps Harris could be observed by experts to be a butcher as an infielder more quickly and definitively than you or I could tell (and that would show up in exactly zero statistics, let alone significantly sample-sized ones)? Or that Span hit a dribbler or two for a hit, or even a line drive on a bad pitch that he shouldn't have been swinging at that skewed those numbers? That Slowey racked up some outs against some guys that ended up in AA?

      Those are just examples, obviously, and none or all may be true. They're simply to illustrate the point of the original question. And that is that I don't think it's all that unlikely that a player who does more good things in the right way ends up without the best numbers. "Winning" a Spring Training battle should be (and likely is) about a lot more than what is shown in their batting line or ERA.
    1. ThePuck's Avatar
      ThePuck -
      Quote Originally Posted by CDog View Post
      This comes up a fair amount, so I figured I'd finally pose the question(s): Is it possible that the winner shouldn't necessarily be the person who ends up with the "better numbers?"

      Could it be that the multitudes of professional baseball coaches of the highest level, who are watching almost every second of Spring Training, see more than the (relatively tiny sample of) numbers convey? That perhaps Harris could be observed by experts to be a butcher as an infielder more quickly and definitively than you or I could tell (and that would show up in exactly zero statistics, let alone significantly sample-sized ones)? Or that Span hit a dribbler or two for a hit, or even a line drive on a bad pitch that he shouldn't have been swinging at that skewed those numbers? That Slowey racked up some outs against some guys that ended up in AA?

      Those are just examples, obviously, and none or all may be true. They're simply to illustrate the point of the original question. And that is that I don't think it's all that unlikely that a player who does more good things in the right way ends up without the best numbers. "Winning" a Spring Training battle should be (and likely is) about a lot more than what is shown in their batting line or ERA.
      Or the results are predetermined and the ST battles are a PR thing...both could be true...but I don't think it's a coincidence that in all three of those instances the guy who lost seemed to do the best by what we normally judge players by. You may be right, could very well be right, but then again...
    1. Riverbrian's Avatar
      Riverbrian -
      I'm willing to guess that the majority of Spring Training Battle are not battles at all. I think the club pretty much knows who they are going up North with and change their minds in spring on occasion but only on rare occasion.

      Just a Guess.
    1. Kwak's Avatar
      Kwak -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kobs View Post
      I'm still convinced that this was the pitch Ryan used to get Smith fired and take back his job.
      I thought it was "I can finish dead last too--on half the budget!"
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kobs View Post
      I'm still convinced that this was the pitch Ryan used to get Smith fired and take back his job.
      I don't accuse Ryan of that, but I do think it is along the right lines. When Smith was fired^H^H^H^H^Hre-assigned Jim Pohlad was quoted concerning "philosophical differences", and at that point I jumped to the conclusion Smith had asked for $20M more in budget, was turned down, re-iterated that he couldn't deliver a winner under those conditions, and Pohlad said if that's how you feel we'll find you another position in the organization. Ryan then agreed to the budget limit and was given the old job back. All supposition on my part, beyond the quote which I do still find archived here.
    1. SweetOne69's Avatar
      SweetOne69 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ashburyjohn View Post
      I don't accuse Ryan of that, but I do think it is along the right lines. When Smith was fired^H^H^H^H^Hre-assigned Jim Pohlad was quoted concerning "philosophical differences", and at that point I jumped to the conclusion Smith had asked for $20M more in budget, was turned down, re-iterated that he couldn't deliver a winner under those conditions, and Pohlad said if that's how you feel we'll find you another position in the organization. Ryan then agreed to the budget limit and was given the old job back. All supposition on my part, beyond the quote which I do still find archived here.
      This
    1. old nurse's Avatar
      old nurse -
      Quote Originally Posted by ashburyjohn View Post
      I don't accuse Ryan of that, but I do think it is along the right lines. When Smith was fired^H^H^H^H^Hre-assigned Jim Pohlad was quoted concerning "philosophical differences", and at that point I jumped to the conclusion Smith had asked for $20M more in budget, was turned down, re-iterated that he couldn't deliver a winner under those conditions, and Pohlad said if that's how you feel we'll find you another position in the organization. Ryan then agreed to the budget limit and was given the old job back. All supposition on my part, beyond the quote which I do still find archived here.
      Maybe the philosophical difference was Smith did not know how to make a trade and would not admit he sucked at it. Maybe he wanted to fire the scouting department because they had not had a decent draft in a few years and the Pohlads did not want to. Maybe the whole pitch to contact thing was Smith's idea because he figured out they were cheaper pitchers and someone else in the organization saw the light. Maybe it was a boxers versus briefs thing. We can all speculate.
    1. FrodaddyG's Avatar
      FrodaddyG -
      Quote Originally Posted by old nurse View Post
      Maybe he wanted to fire the scouting department because they had not had a decent draft in a few years and the Pohlads did not want to.
      This made me curious, so I glanced at the Twins' past 10 drafts (about half JR, half BS) to see what players came to see any noteworthy time in the majors. With the Twins or elsewhere. For the sake of recent drafts, I'll try and list some of the top guys (or just the top few picks from those drafts) who are still possible prospects, since most won't have sniffed the majors yet. (And just because some of these years would just be incredibly sad without listing even the guys who may barely ever see the bigs.)

      2003 (Ryan):
      Scott Baker (2)

      2004 (Ryan):
      Trevor Plouffe (1)
      Glen Perkins (1S)
      Anthony Swarzak (2)
      Matt Tolbert (16)

      2005 (Ryan):
      Matt Garza (1)
      Kevin Slowey (2S)
      Brian Duensing (3)
      Alex Burnett (12)

      2006 (Ryan):
      Chris Parmelee (1)
      Joe Benson (2)
      Tyler Robertson (3)
      Jeff Manship (14)
      Danny Valencia (19)
      Anthony Slama (39)

      2007 (Ryan):
      Revere(1)

      2008 (Smith):
      Aaron Hicks (1)
      Carlos Gutierrez (1)
      BJ Hermsen (6)

      2009 (Smith):
      Kyle Gibson (1)
      Chris Herrmann (6)

      2010 (Smith):
      Alex Wimmers (1)
      Niko Goodrum (2)
      Eddie Rosario (4)
      Nate Roberts (5)

      2011 (Smith):
      Levi Michael (1)
      Travis Harrison (2)
      Hudson Boyd (3)
      Madison Boer (4)

      2012 (Ryan):
      Byron Buxton (1)
      JO Berrios (2)
      Luke Bard (3)
      Mason Melotakis (4)

      Not an exhaustive list, and I may have missed one or two along the way, and I was only using the draft. No international signings. (Smith's tenure looks quite a bit better if you factor guys like Sano and Kepler into the prospect lists.)

      No matter how you spin it, that's a pretty sad showing for the 2003 to 2007 window that Ryan was running things. On the pitching side of things, they netted a total of two useful starting pitchers (Baker and Garza), two useful bullpen lefties (Perkins and Duensing), and whatever you'd call Kevin Slowey at this point in time (in the case of Dickbert, an ***hole).

      Hitting-wise, that same time frame saw Parmelee, Plouffe, Valencia, Benson and Revere. Three guys yet to fully prove themselves, a defensive CF, and Danny Valencia (see Dickbert's evaluation of Slowey, Kevin). When this is the cream of the talent pool being drawn upon to replace departing veterans, it probably shouldn't be a huge surprise the team results began to wane eventually. Now to hope the drafts from 2008 on start to pay a few more dividends than the lean years of the mid-2000s.

      (I used the draft results on the Twins site if anyone wanted to browse them and maybe catch someone useful I missed:
      Minnesota Twins 2003 Draft Results | twinsbaseball.com: Team)
    1. Kwak's Avatar
      Kwak -
      The Draft results for after the 1st Round are even worse. There are future major leaguers, even future all-stars available. It is true the salary bonuses required to sign 1st round selections did escalate substantially as the millenium progressed, but later round rounds were very affordable for the Twins. There were threads in MLBdotcom about top ten prospects by position and the later rounds were well represented in this year's edition. The Twins talk about scouting and proper development (with loads of time spent in the minors) but the results are dismal. I certainly agree that the draft and International signings should be the primary source of players--but free agents are needed! The class C, D, and recovering-from-surgery are not the type to sign. Focus on a few "upper-tier" free agents at positions the franchise is weak, and fit in the promotions around them--not promote from the minors the tio prospects and then sign guys who are no more than hole-pluggers.
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Quote Originally Posted by old nurse View Post
      Maybe the philosophical difference was Smith did not know how to make a trade and would not admit he sucked at it. Maybe he wanted to fire the scouting department because they had not had a decent draft in a few years and the Pohlads did not want to. Maybe the whole pitch to contact thing was Smith's idea because he figured out they were cheaper pitchers and someone else in the organization saw the light. Maybe it was a boxers versus briefs thing. We can all speculate.
      Yeah, it's probably one of those.
    1. Mitchsull52's Avatar
      Mitchsull52 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Brock Beauchamp View Post
      Last season, these were the OPS+ numbers for Twins middle infielders (non Jamey Carroll edition):

      Brian Dozier: 67 OPS+ in 340 PAs
      Eduardo Escobar: 41 OPS+ in 49 PAs
      Pedro Florimon: 61 OPS+ in 150 PAs

      Now here are some bargain middle infielders who could have been nabbed for a song ($2m or under, or Jamey Carroll's 2014 option):
      Kelly Johnson: 2011, 111 OPS+ in 132 PAs / 2012, 84 OPS+ in 581 PAs
      Ronny Cedeno: 2011, 70 OPS+ in 413 PAs / 2012, 104 OPS+ in 186 PAs

      You really don't see any room for improvement there? There are two middle infield spots to play, after all. Picking up a second body who has proven the ability to hit Major League pitching is not an unreasonable request. If Dozier (possible) or Florimon (not so much) steps up, you're still allowed some flexibility instead of relying on someone who has a very good chance of being awful at the plate by sliding one of the vets into a utility role. If it allows you to bench Carroll if/when he gets old overnight, even better. Otherwise, you're forced to run Carroll out there nearly every night because he's still better than your second and third options (Escobar and Florimon). As it stands now, Carroll could post a 75 OPS+ and he'd still get his 401 PAs because the chance of Florimon being a viable option at short over the course of a season is virtually zero. Add in a Johnson or Cedeno and you don't have to lean on Jamey so heavily when Florimon and Escobar fail spectacularly.

      Also, what happens at third base if Plouffe fails?
      totally agree with everything u just said, except I take issue with just using ops+ over a two year span to prove your point. But I suppose it's a quick and dirty way to roughly establish that the twins can or rather could have (drastically) improved their middle infield. That's not what I was critizing. Your initial writing, to me, seemed to focus on 1) intelligent 2) prudent allocation of dollars and years or as I put it "frugality". Carrol is the primordial utility player, but does using him as such really increase the bang for your buck? Short answer, no. Terry Ryan is one of if not the most savvy GM's in baseball when it comes to these periphery marginal players. Pound for pound paying carrol part time money and using him as a starter is probably one of the most frugal and proper allocation of "dollars and years" when it comes to free agency. In a vacuum yes you are right those other players u listed are almost just as good if not better value but add them to the team this year and you essentially squander carrol value (if you are simply playing carrol less to avoid paying 2 million more in 2014). I believe we have similar ideas for what the twins should have done but ultimately I think you failed to see the forest through the trees. That being said this is one of the more intriguing writings on this website I've read and I hope we get more of them.
    1. old nurse's Avatar
      old nurse -
      Quote Originally Posted by FrodaddyG View Post
      This made me curious, so I glanced at the Twins' past 10 drafts (about half JR, half BS) to see what players came to see any noteworthy time in the majors. With the Twins or elsewhere. For the sake of recent drafts, I'll try and list some of the top guys (or just the top few picks from those drafts) who are still possible prospects, since most won't have sniffed the majors yet. (And just because some of these years would just be incredibly sad without listing even the guys who may barely ever see the bigs.)

      2003 (Ryan):
      Scott Baker (2)

      2004 (Ryan):
      Trevor Plouffe (1)
      Glen Perkins (1S)
      Anthony Swarzak (2)
      Matt Tolbert (16)

      2005 (Ryan):
      Matt Garza (1)
      Kevin Slowey (2S)
      Brian Duensing (3)
      Alex Burnett (12)

      2006 (Ryan):
      Chris Parmelee (1)
      Joe Benson (2)
      Tyler Robertson (3)
      Jeff Manship (14)
      Danny Valencia (19)
      Anthony Slama (39)

      2007 (Ryan):
      Revere(1)

      2008 (Smith):
      Aaron Hicks (1)
      Carlos Gutierrez (1)
      BJ Hermsen (6)

      2009 (Smith):
      Kyle Gibson (1)
      Chris Herrmann (6)

      2010 (Smith):
      Alex Wimmers (1)
      Niko Goodrum (2)
      Eddie Rosario (4)
      Nate Roberts (5)

      2011 (Smith):
      Levi Michael (1)
      Travis Harrison (2)
      Hudson Boyd (3)
      Madison Boer (4)

      2012 (Ryan):
      Byron Buxton (1)
      JO Berrios (2)
      Luke Bard (3)
      Mason Melotakis (4)

      Not an exhaustive list, and I may have missed one or two along the way, and I was only using the draft. No international signings. (Smith's tenure looks quite a bit better if you factor guys like Sano and Kepler into the prospect lists.)

      No matter how you spin it, that's a pretty sad showing for the 2003 to 2007 window that Ryan was running things. On the pitching side of things, they netted a total of two useful starting pitchers (Baker and Garza), two useful bullpen lefties (Perkins and Duensing), and whatever you'd call Kevin Slowey at this point in time (in the case of Dickbert, an ***hole).

      Hitting-wise, that same time frame saw Parmelee, Plouffe, Valencia, Benson and Revere. Three guys yet to fully prove themselves, a defensive CF, and Danny Valencia (see Dickbert's evaluation of Slowey, Kevin). When this is the cream of the talent pool being drawn upon to replace departing veterans, it probably shouldn't be a huge surprise the team results began to wane eventually. Now to hope the drafts from 2008 on start to pay a few more dividends than the lean years of the mid-2000s.

      (I used the draft results on the Twins site if anyone wanted to browse them and maybe catch someone useful I missed:
      Minnesota Twins 2003 Draft Results | twinsbaseball.com: Team)
      I am sorry that you couldn't tell I wasn't 100 % serious with the answer. Boxers versus brief should have been a real big clue. I guess I have to be less subtle for you next time.
      Nice list of draft choices. Remember it was after the 2011 season. At that point on your lift of draftees how many were starting players, starting pitchers, or closers in 2011 with the Twins? The byproducts of the trades made by Smith, which would have been gleaned from the scouting information, how many of them were in a significant role fore the Twins when Smith left?
      Nice you listed the GM. Near the end of this story you can read about Deron Johnson's role in the draft
      For Twins scouting director Deron Johnson, scouting is true labor of love | MLB.com: News
    1. FrodaddyG's Avatar
      FrodaddyG -
      Quote Originally Posted by old nurse View Post
      I am sorry that you couldn't tell I wasn't 100 % serious with the answer.
      It wasn't prompted out of any kind of seriousness. There was just a line in your post that seemed thought-provoking. (I know. I was amazed, too.)
    1. Kwak's Avatar
      Kwak -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mitchsull52 View Post
      totally agree with everything u just said, except I take issue with just using ops+ over a two year span to prove your point. But I suppose it's a quick and dirty way to roughly establish that the twins can or rather could have (drastically) improved their middle infield. That's not what I was critizing. Your initial writing, to me, seemed to focus on 1) intelligent 2) prudent allocation of dollars and years or as I put it "frugality". Carrol is the primordial utility player, but does using him as such really increase the bang for your buck? Short answer, no. Terry Ryan is one of if not the most savvy GM's in baseball when it comes to these periphery marginal players. Pound for pound paying carrol part time money and using him as a starter is probably one of the most frugal and proper allocation of "dollars and years" when it comes to free agency. In a vacuum yes you are right those other players u listed are almost just as good if not better value but add them to the team this year and you essentially squander carrol value (if you are simply playing carrol less to avoid paying 2 million more in 2014). I believe we have similar ideas for what the twins should have done but ultimately I think you failed to see the forest through the trees. That being said this is one of the more intriguing writings on this website I've read and I hope we get more of them.
      Terrific insight! Sign competent "reserve-type" players and install them as "everyday-players" as an example of savvy management. True, it is much less expensive to sign "reserve-type" players than the "everyday-players", but it is folly to expect the "reserve" to produce like everyday players. But of course the esteemed GM is fully aware of that! He simply defines "winning" differently that we dumb fans and that's the source of our confusion/displeasure--we don't don't see the "big picture". The GM wants " a clear path" for all of the wonderful prospects in the system to move into the the major league line-up (at their roughly league-minimum salary) such that the Twins can operate "efficiently" (except for Mauer of course). It is but a minor detail that the team will lose many more than they win--but the team will be efficient!
    1. pajavorski's Avatar
      pajavorski -
      Hypothetically if the twins are trying to seriously contend in 2013, they would need a bunch of things to go there way. I.e. mauer/ morneau at MVP levels, pelfrey and Harden healthy and decently effective, plouffe being a HR God. Then I see the logic in getting more middleinfield options like cadeno or making a risk reward signing of Kelly johnson. However I believe the TWINS ARENT PLANNING on competing in 2013 thus. TRs talk is just that talk, and I don't blame him. I hope they are stashing all this extra cash with a note on it saying 2014-2015 younger Ace pitcher. hey a guy can hope right?
    1. The Wise One's Avatar
      The Wise One -
      Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post
      I'm willing to guess that the majority of Spring Training Battle are not battles at all. I think the club pretty much knows who they are going up North with and change their minds in spring on occasion but only on rare occasion.

      Just a Guess.
      Take a look at when someone gets their AB in a game. See if Hicks or Benson are going against the front line pitchers. There is a competition on if they are.
    1. Riverbrian's Avatar
      Riverbrian -
      Quote Originally Posted by The Wise One View Post
      Take a look at when someone gets their AB in a game. See if Hicks or Benson are going against the front line pitchers. There is a competition on if they are.
      I will and I can't wait for it.
    1. Mitchsull52's Avatar
      Mitchsull52 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kwak View Post
      Terrific insight! Sign competent "reserve-type" players and install them as "everyday-players" as an example of savvy management. True, it is much less expensive to sign "reserve-type" players than the "everyday-players", but it is folly to expect the "reserve" to produce like everyday players. But of course the esteemed GM is fully aware of that! He simply defines "winning" differently that we dumb fans and that's the source of our confusion/displeasure--we don't don't see the "big picture". The GM wants " a clear path" for all of the wonderful prospects in the system to move into the the major league line-up (at their roughly league-minimum salary) such that the Twins can operate "efficiently" (except for Mauer of course). It is but a minor detail that the team will lose many more than they win--but the team will be efficient!

      Ok, I think a good rule of using sarcasm in print is to not switch back and forth between writing facetiously and seriously. Or, at least, not do so in the same section. Beyond that I don't really see the over all point to any of what you wrote, other then general gripping. "Reserve player" and "regular" are not terms with set parameters. They are not set positions on the field. Jamey carrol makes the twins better and is a cost effective way of doing so. There is an huge range of issues beyond just him. issues that are far more complicated and to be honest much more important. I was trying to have a nuisances discussion and I don't think you added anything directly relevant to it. In fact I think you went off on a tangent that gets really boring hearing about constantly. What's the point of having these blogs to begin with if it always has to devolve in to the same old basic, lowest common denominator, irrational, collective sob? I thought the whole point of this site was essentially very very in depth and detailed variations of the question "so what?"
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