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Today's Philosophical Question: Can we even recognize good baseball anymore?

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#1 JB_Iowa

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 08:22 AM

It struck me as I was reading the "Wake Me Up When September Ends" thread that I have watched so much BAD baseball the last 3+ years, that I'm not sure I even recognize the degrees of bad-mediocrity-good anymore.

 

Are we so inured to watching a bad rotation that even a mediocre one now appears that it will be good to us?  That is kind of the feeling I get from some of the posts here.  The same thing with line-ups:  are we now just thankful for mediocre?

 

I know the Twins probably have to move from bad to mediocre before they can become good ... but I hope we don't lose track of how to "get good" -- it iw with good players (and I would argue new management but that's a topic for another thread).

 

That is where the advanced metrics seem to offer some great help.  Although not perfect, they do give a way to generally compare performance levels and potentials.

 

Meanwhile, I think I have to turn the channel and watch some good baseball for awhile.

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#2 spycake

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 11:22 AM

Are we so inured to watching a bad rotation that even a mediocre one now appears that it will be good to us?  That is kind of the feeling I get from some of the posts here.  The same thing with line-ups:  are we now just thankful for mediocre?

I get that sense too.  Hughes and Gibson are without question improvements and have value going forward, but they are still roughly league average guys.

 

Plouffe is probably the poster boy for this effect on the offensive side -- he's useful but nothing like a "plus" player.  Actually, while most are better than Plouffe, our whole lineup seems closer to "useful" rather than "plus" right now too.

 

To actually be competitive and relevant again, we will need multiple "plus" guys around the roster, and right now we barely have any.  And that might be the more challenging step than simply finding useful guys to move away from 100 losses.  Probably a big part of why I wanted to see Meyer yet this season -- he's our nearest shot at such a SP.  And certainly why we have all been so disappointed in the lost seasons of Buxton and Sano.


#3 Winston Smith

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 11:45 AM

We are on pace to lose 90+ games for the 4th year in a row.  At 14-15 games under .500 we could hardly be called even mediocre which would be by definition  a .500 record.

 

This team has a lot of holes to fix and become better at playing baseball just to get back in the mediocre range, imo.

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#4 mike wants wins

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 12:48 PM

It does seem to me that people are over estimating this team. I keep seeing stuff like "we only have a hole or two to fill", which seems off to me, given how bad they are. Or "the pitching is much better", even though they have given up the same number of runs as last year at this time.......

 

I have no issue realizing this is still bad baseball.....

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#5 Willihammer

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 01:04 PM

Last year at this point they had a pythagorean W-L of .436. This year its .459. An improvement of .023. If the current 1-year trend holds, the Twins will be a .500 team in 2016 and a wild card contender in 2018.

So yeah, smoke em if you got em, I guess.

#6 mike wants wins

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 01:16 PM

4 more years! 4 more years!

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What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#7 Oxtung

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 01:19 PM

JB, your statement is exactly what I was trying to show with my post in the thread you mention.  I didn't do a good job elucidating it though.  I think you're right on.  The Twins have been so bad for so long we fans see even small improvements as large.  We think the team is closer to contention then it really is.  There is certainly hope to be had with the influx of prospects over the next several years but it should also be in the back of all of our minds the Twins have a long ways to go.  If they can add elite talent they should regardless if there is a prospect there or not.

 

I think spycake has a good point too.  There was a graph that showed the high WAR players of the Twins.  It showed that when the Twins were good they had 4 players with a very high WAR.  Who is that going to be right now?  Who is going to step up and be a 3-6 WAR player?  Until we have those players we're doomed to life as a roughly middle of the pack team, or worse.

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#8 Steve_h

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 01:22 PM

Yes, this team has been overestimated and will lose 90 games for a fourth straight year. It's been a bad four-year run and I think we can all recognize that. However, it doesn't mean everything we've seen is bad though. Sometimes when you're in a run like this, like the Twins in the latter '90s, good seems so far away.

 

But that's not always the case. In 2000, the Twins had their fourth straight 90-loss team at 69-93. A year later with many of the same players and a few minor league reinforcements, there was contention and an 85-77 record and then a string of division titles. We all loved the Twins '87 championship, but '86 was a disaster and a 71-91 finish that was made better only by a Tom Kelly hiring and strong finish in September. The line between bad-mediocre-good is pretty narrow. 

 

A couple new faces (maybe Sano, a full season from Vargas, and a more consistent rotation that might include improvements from Gibson and May, along with an established Hughes and a new face like Meyer, could go a long way toward contention in the era of two wildcards. Even look at the Red Sox. The 2012 version went 69-93 before winning the WS in 2013 with 97 wins in the regular season. 

 

The hum-drum of 90-loss seasons is mesmerizing and makes fans think anything good is a long ways away. It doesn't have to be. The right kind of retooling is the key and accurately making the call on who is part of that regeneration is what makes a FO or manager/coaches valuable. That's also where advanced metrics need to be used.

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#9 drjim

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 01:42 PM

Yes, this team has been overestimated and will lose 90 games for a fourth straight year. It's been a bad four-year run and I think we can all recognize that. However, it doesn't mean everything we've seen is bad though. Sometimes when you're in a run like this, like the Twins in the latter '90s, good seems so far away.

 

But that's not always the case. In 2000, the Twins had their fourth straight 90-loss team at 69-93. A year later with many of the same players and a few minor league reinforcements, there was contention and an 85-77 record and then a string of division titles. We all loved the Twins '87 championship, but '86 was a disaster and a 71-91 finish that was made better only by a Tom Kelly hiring and strong finish in September. The line between bad-mediocre-good is pretty narrow. 

 

A couple new faces (maybe Sano, a full season from Vargas, and a more consistent rotation that might include improvements from Gibson and May, along with an established Hughes and a new face like Meyer, could go a long way toward contention in the era of two wildcards. Even look at the Red Sox. The 2012 version went 69-93 before winning the WS in 2013 with 97 wins in the regular season. 

 

The hum-drum of 90-loss seasons is mesmerizing and makes fans think anything good is a long ways away. It doesn't have to be. The right kind of retooling is the key and accurately making the call on who is part of that regeneration is what makes a FO or manager/coaches valuable. That's also where advanced metrics need to be used.

 

My optimism comes more from this type of thinking that what else is being offered up in this thread. It seems the disaster spots have been (or soon will be ) filled with at least competency if not plus.

 

I think there is clear room to add a corner bat and a starting pitcher but most of the improvement for the team will come from internal sources. There is always some improvement and some regression, but I think the current roster should result in a net improvement, combined with three actual legit stud prospects that should debut at some point, and hopefully a legit FA or two.

 

The team is trending right if the results are not there. I'm not sure I would mistake that for good baseball.

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#10 spycake

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 02:25 PM

But that's not always the case. In 2000, the Twins had their fourth straight 90-loss team at 69-93. A year later with many of the same players and a few minor league reinforcements, there was contention and an 85-77 record and then a string of division titles. We all loved the Twins '87 championship, but '86 was a disaster and a 71-91 finish that was made better only by a Tom Kelly hiring and strong finish in September. The line between bad-mediocre-good is pretty narrow. 

The 2000 Twins had an average batter age 1.5 years younger than the 2014 Twins, and 3.1 years younger for pitchers.  The average batters and pitchers on the 1986 team were also each over a year younger than their 2014 counterparts.

 

Both of those teams also already had an ace starting pitcher.  Actually, the '86 team may have had two workhorse aces although Viola had a down year.  The 2000 team also had 4 young SP who all had enough experience and past success to be potential contributors from day 1 the following year.  The '86 team had 2-3 star/superstar position players too.  And back to the point of this thread, there were several not terribly young guys who had decent, average-ish seasons on those teams who ultimately played little or no role in the team's quick resurgence.

 

In addition to those 4 starting pitchers, a big part presaging the 2000-2001 turnaround was Hunter and AJ (24 and 23 years old, respectively, at the time) coming back up from minors in August 2000 and playing well down the stretch and continuing those contributions from day 1 the following season.  Who could be those players now?  Hicks?  Pinto?  Would love to see them get that chance.  Mientkiewicz was another, although he didn't see much action in 2000 thanks to the Olympics.


#11 birdwatcher

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 02:46 PM

I spent my entire career in the asset management business, so I appreciate the fact that numbers play an important (albeit secondary) role in evaluating an enterprise. I guess my advice to most of you would be to put your pencils down and stop counting for a minute, and really observe what's going on with this club.

 

Last year, once again, many games were simply unwatchable. This year, those games have been far less common. I suppose if you can't wean yourself from statistics you might look at things like run differential or quality starts and crap like that, but here's where I find joy: Gibson learning his craft, Santana surprising, Vargas making me look up from my book whenever his name is announced ( takes me back to my childhood and Killebrew), Arcia taking his lumps, Plouffe growing up, Hughes as a savvy pickup, a solid bullpen and Perkins as a solid citizen.... oh, and dozens- not a few but dozens- of really outstanding performances coming now from every level of competition in the minors. So much talent percolating up that we're liking what we see from Vargas and Santana, who weren't ranked among out ten best prospects! 

 

So yeah, I'd be suicidal if I got all myopic looking at pythagorean this and "plus" that, or if I tunneled my vision such that all I saw was 14 games under .500 at this very moment and fixated on what's going as only this statistical nothingness that is today's snapshot. 

 

My Lord, people, things are not just GETTING better, they ARE better already! Why give a flying puck about whether or not the team ERA is better? Can you really not see that the pitching staff is better? I for one am joyful. I'd rather smile about Gibson than complain about Pelfrey.

 

So no, I think any sense you might have that people are confused about mediocrity versus good comes from being muddled up in your own arithmetic. :)

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#12 Longdistancetwins

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 03:04 PM

I distinctly remember seeing positives in the 1990 Twins, also.  It was more of a gut feeling that pitching and defense were a whole lot better despite the dismal won-lost record.

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#13 Willihammer

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 03:12 PM

FWIW my comment about the pythagoran trend of this club was about 50% joke. Obviously year to year changes in runs scored/allowed aren't linear. And actually, comparing the 2014 team to teh 2013 team using pythagorean record paints them in a more positive light than looking at actual W-L record, since they overperformed it last year and are underperforming it this year.

edit: and I have watched about 50% of the games, if we are going to go down that road.

Edited by Willihammer, 21 August 2014 - 03:14 PM.


#14 CRArko

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 03:39 PM

I think if that's the way I felt I'd take some of that time to indulge other hobbies. Come to think of it, I would anyway.
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#15 Brandon

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 03:40 PM

As a team...were getting there. 

 

plus hitters:

Santana

Plouffe

Escobar

Dozier

Suzuki

Vargas

 

hitters who should be plus next year:

Mauer

Arcia

 

That's solid potential there plus Sano and Buxton on the way we hope

 

Rotation:

Hughes

Gibson

 

Should be alright:

Nolasco

Millone

Meyer when he gets up here.

 

Pino and Swarzak makes a sold 6th starter

 

The whole bullpen has been pretty solid.  Burton had a down season but overall if he's the worst that's not bad.


#16 Oxtung

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 04:17 PM

I spent my entire career in the asset management business, so I appreciate the fact that numbers play an important (albeit secondary) role in evaluating an enterprise. I guess my advice to most of you would be to put your pencils down and stop counting for a minute, and really observe what's going on with this club.

 

Last year, once again, many games were simply unwatchable. This year, those games have been far less common. I suppose if you can't wean yourself from statistics you might look at things like run differential or quality starts and crap like that, but here's where I find joy: Gibson learning his craft, Santana surprising, Vargas making me look up from my book whenever his name is announced ( takes me back to my childhood and Killebrew), Arcia taking his lumps, Plouffe growing up, Hughes as a savvy pickup, a solid bullpen and Perkins as a solid citizen.... oh, and dozens- not a few but dozens- of really outstanding performances coming now from every level of competition in the minors. So much talent percolating up that we're liking what we see from Vargas and Santana, who weren't ranked among out ten best prospects! 

 

So yeah, I'd be suicidal if I got all myopic looking at pythagorean this and "plus" that, or if I tunneled my vision such that all I saw was 14 games under .500 at this very moment and fixated on what's going as only this statistical nothingness that is today's snapshot. 

 

My Lord, people, things are not just GETTING better, they ARE better already! Why give a flying puck about whether or not the team ERA is better? Can you really not see that the pitching staff is better? I for one am joyful. I'd rather smile about Gibson than complain about Pelfrey.

 

So no, I think any sense you might have that people are confused about mediocrity versus good comes from being muddled up in your own arithmetic. :)

 

I think this post answers the OP question nicely.  No, we as fans can not separate improvement from good baseball.
 

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#17 Thrylos

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 04:55 PM

It struck me as I was reading the "Wake Me Up When September Ends" thread that I have watched so much BAD baseball the last 3+ years, that I'm not sure I even recognize the degrees of bad-mediocrity-good anymore.

 

I agree with this, but it not the past 3+ years only.  It has been since the strike and the subsequent contraction era awfulness in the late 90s made the subsequent mediocre play in a weak division in the 00s look "good", and average or above average players, like Radke, Hunter, Koskie, Nathan, Cuddyer, Kubel, Dozier et al were treated as stars.  This team had 4 stars in their primes since the strike: J Santana, J. Mauer, F Liriano & J Morneau.  The primes of the last 2 were shorter...

 

I think that bad baseball is better than no baseball, and, also, unless the fans are able to realize bad/mediocre/good and care enough to demand good, as long as bad/mediocre pays the bills and makes money, good will not happen. 

Edited by Thrylos, 21 August 2014 - 05:09 PM.

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#18 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 05:24 PM

I agree with this, but it not the past 3+ years only.  It has been since the strike and the subsequent contraction era awfulness in the late 90s made the subsequent mediocre play in a weak division in the 00s look "good", and average or above average players, like Radke, Hunter, Koskie, Nathan, Cuddyer, Kubel, Dozier et al were treated as stars.  This team had 4 stars in their primes since the strike: J Santana, J. Mauer, F Liriano & J Morneau.  The primes of the last 2 were shorter...

 

I think that bad baseball is better than no baseball, and, also, unless the fans are able to realize bad/mediocre/good and care enough to demand good, as long as bad/mediocre pays the bills and makes money, good will not happen. 

 

 

The Twins averaged 86 wins during the 2000s... That's including an awful 2000 season (93 losses) and not including a very good 2010 season. Slide that scale to 2001-2010 and the average jumps to 89 wins a season.

 

Mediocre. You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

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#19 Rosterman

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 05:40 PM

As a team...were getting there. 

 

plus hitters:

Santana

Plouffe

Escobar

Dozier

Suzuki

Vargas

 

hitters who should be plus next year:

Mauer

Arcia

 

That's solid potential there plus Sano and Buxton on the way we hope

 

Rotation:

Hughes

Gibson

 

Should be alright:

Nolasco

Millone

Meyer when he gets up here.

 

Pino and Swarzak makes a sold 6th starter

 

The whole bullpen has been pretty solid.  Burton had a down season but overall if he's the worst that's not bad.

When you look at the Twin current roster and prospects, you have to approach it from a variety of angles.

 

The first question: Who MIGHT be around in 2015 and 2016.

 

What players COULD find a place on another team's roster and at what price. If they can't, they are pretty worthless to the Twins in the long run. If it is a player the Twins could release and the only chance the player has of signing somewhere else, they are worthless.

 

But are they worthless to the Twins? At the moment, not, if they are a placesetting for a prospect down the line (see Plouffe).

 

Right now, the Twins need no free agents. Burton should be sent packing for anyone, or jsut to clear roster space for someone else to et some innings.

 

The Twins need to ask the worth of Nolasco. Would he be amrketable to, say, the Angels RIGHT NOW who are looking for a rotation boost and might consider Nolasco a long-term contract plus.

 

The Twins need to do something with an abundance of replaceable bullpen arms. Pino and Deduno are not needs for 2015. Kris Johnson and Logan Darnell have situational lefty worth and maybe spot starting. The fact that we have two such bodies should make Duensing a trade/claim possibility.

 

Is Swarzak worth the pay increase to be the starter we don't need and the replaceable long man in the pen. Would we be better off (no, I say, with Pino and Deduno) having May hold his spot next season, or hoping Guerra can step up, or is Pressly the new kid in the bullpen long-relief.

 

Thielbar is still cheap. Aaron Thompson collapsed, but just might be fatigue, but he is also on the up end of old and I don't see him pitching in 2016, elt alone a need as anything but minor league fodder in 2016.

 

The Twins easily have Tonkin and Achter and more in the system. THEY NEED TO SEND SOME OVERWORKED AND SOON TO BE OLD OR EXPENSIVE RELIEVERS ELSEWHERE COME 9/1.

 

I don't see them adding any hitters to the 40-man, although I would send Fryer packing once Pinto comes north, and let's look at Rohlfing as a bench bat. He is not a longtterm goal player (like Beresford or Bernier or Rodriguez or Ramirez) but I could see any of those bodies getting a September callup and a 40-man spot until we need to find places for the real 40-man keepers in November. Yes, I would like to see Rosario and Koch and Meyer and even Deibeson Romero get a roster spot (we better see Lester Oliveros in September). 

 

So, see if there is a taker for Nolasco and start over for a big budget front of the rotation starter for 2015, maybe.

 

Clean house of the bullpen and get some prospects.

 

Look at a few (3-4 AAA guys just because you don't want to look at the real promising guys, which doesn't make sense, but.....)

 

Make hardnosed decisions on Colabello and Florimon and Fryer. I would rather see Ortiz, Rohlfing, Romero get a looksee than AAAA guys that shouldn't be around, except as minor league fodder, in 2015.

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#20 Thrylos

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 05:49 PM

The Twins averaged 86 wins during the 2000s... That's including an awful 2000 season (93 losses) and not including a very good 2010 season. Slide that scale to 2001-2010 and the average jumps to 89 wins a season.

 

Mediocre. You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

 

I think that you are making my point :)

 

here are a bunch of synonyms for the term.   As you can see, decent, is one, and that is the one I would use to describe the Twins in the 00s.  Or not quite good enough, if you prefer.   I would be gladly to sub those 2 terms, instead of mediocre.

 

Beating below average AL Central components (but getting embarrassed by AL East) during the regular season and having a 6-21 post-season record is not "good" any way you cut it.  It is better than a lot of teams (it is decent), but not quite good enough, so it is mediocre.  Of course mediocre is preferable than horrible (see: 94-00 & 2011-) but by no means good.

 

And expectations might be different, which is another part of my premise:  That fans are ok with the team being mediocre, and unless that changes, they will not be good.

Edited by Thrylos, 21 August 2014 - 05:49 PM.

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#21 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 06:38 PM

Make hardnosed decisions on Colabello and Florimon and Fryer. I would rather see Ortiz, Rohlfing, Romero get a looksee than AAAA guys that shouldn't be around, except as minor league fodder, in 2015.

 

I think I know where you are going with this, but I don't think cutting any of these guys here would be a hard nosed decision, per se. For some of us, the one big organizational decision we are waiting on is the manager and coaches. If the Twins are privately courting Redmond or Mientkiewicz or some other symbol of the good ol' days, then I'd rather just keep Gardy in the role. But I'd prefer to see a completely new staff altogether. I could make an exception for Molly. 


#22 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 06:45 PM

And expectations might be different, which is another part of my premise:  That fans are ok with the team being mediocre, and unless that changes, they will not be good.

By many accounts, including my own, the Twins have drawn fairly well at times this month. It might be a residual "All Star Game" bump, or it may be that many of us underestimate the Twins drawing power, that going to Target Field on a summer night and cheering the team is still a fun thing to do.


#23 Seth Stohs

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 07:13 PM

Brock, you have to realize that with Thrylos, if you don't win the World Series, you had a bad year. So yeah, all those 90 win seasons were meaningless, I guess.

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#24 JB_Iowa

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 07:28 PM

Brock, you have to realize that with Thrylos, if you don't win the World Series, you had a bad year. So yeah, all those 90 win seasons were meaningless, I guess.

 

Failure to advance in the playoffs is FAILURE.

 

We're not talking mixed results here -- we are talking a failure to EVER advance in the playoffs after 2002,  And frankly, it wasn't even close.

 

So, yes, all those playoff losses have a pretty negative impact on the "happy effect" of the regular season victories.


#25 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 07:34 PM

I think that you are making my point :)

 

here are a bunch of synonyms for the term. 

 

How about we just go with the actual definition of the word instead?

 

mediocre: of only ordinary or moderate quality; neither good nor bad; barely adequate.

 

An average winning percentage of .550 does not qualify as "mediocre", as there are probably only 3-4 teams that have a better winning percentage over that time.

 

Not even close to mediocre. You keep using that word and it's wrong. every. time.

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#26 Thrylos

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 07:40 PM

Brock, you have to realize that with Thrylos, if you don't win the World Series, you had a bad year. So yeah, all those 90 win seasons were meaningless, I guess.

 

Not quite.  I'd take an occasional appearance to the World Series ;)

 

Frankly... being there in both '87 & '91 and in what followed after the strike and the contraction conversation and the resurrection in the 00s, the biggest disappointment was the loss in the second game of the ALCS in the Dome to the Angels in 2002.  The Twins just never lost in the post-season at home.  That just did not happen (well, the lost in the previous series to OAK, but the swept them away so that was more of a back of the mind thing.)   And then they went to Disneyland and went belly up pretty much.  And the same every other post season that followed the last decade.

 

Hard to point it out, but this team just does not have the attitude that the teams of the MacPhail era had, which mainly was a. hating losing and b. hating losing at home even more.

 

And this shows.  And this could pretty much be the difference between a good and a mediocre team.

 

And, of course, I'd love to see them win it all (again.) But I'd love to see perspective and sense in them before that and a hate of losing.  I am probably one of the few people that this rubbed the wrong way, but I really found the way that this club celebrated and commemorated Gardenhire's personal 1000th win among the fourth miserable team season in a row, a tad tacky, disconcerting and  embarrassing.

 

But it is just me likely.

 

And it is not winning World Series....

 

It is just wanting to win, hating losing and not being happy and complacent and celebrating losing.  

Edited by Thrylos, 21 August 2014 - 07:41 PM.

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#27 TheLeviathan

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 08:44 PM

I would suggest that we could agree some things are better and still be fooling ourselves about how far away from "good" we still are.

 

It's pretty far and probably a considerable time away yet.

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#28 birdwatcher

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 09:16 PM

I think this post answers the OP question nicely.  No, we as fans can not separate improvement from good baseball.
 

Perhaps it's a question of what one views as "good baseball".  If one defines things pretty much as all bad because of a poor W-L record, or a shabby team ERA, fine. It's bad baseball. There's not a member on TD that thinks our team ERA is good. To be blunt, I find it tiresome to be bludgeoned by one recital of numbers after another to demonstrate just how bad things are.

 

I puttered around my garden today, listening to the game. At the end of the game, we were in last place, about 13 games below .500, with the world's worst team ERA in the history of mankind I think. Vargas homers, Arcia scoots home from first on a Plouffe double, and Hughes excels. But who gives a crap about that? Just look at the numbers. We're at risk of a 4th straight 90 loss....

 

Geez. God, that was good baseball today. :)

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#29 TheLeviathan

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 09:19 PM

Perhaps it's a question of what one views as "good baseball".  If one defines things pretty much as all bad because of a poor W-L record, or a shabby team ERA, fine. It's bad baseball. There's not a member on TD that thinks our team ERA is good. To be blunt, I find it tiresome to be bludgeoned by one recital of numbers after another to demonstrate just how bad things are.

 

I puttered around my garden today, listening to the game. At the end of the game, we were in last place, about 13 games below .500, with the world's worst team ERA in the history of mankind I think. Vargas homers, Arcia scoots home from first on a Plouffe double, and Hughes excels. But who gives a crap about that? Just look at the numbers. We're at risk of a 4th straight 90 loss....

 

Geez. God, that was good baseball today. :)

 

Picking out a few nice trees to admire doesn't mean the forest isn't in tough shape.  You're choosing to talk about isolated players and the focus of the question is the team.

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#30 birdwatcher

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Posted 21 August 2014 - 09:53 PM

I would suggest that we could agree some things are better and still be fooling ourselves about how far away from "good" we still are.

 

It's pretty far and probably a considerable time away yet.

Most of the time when I find myself at odds perspective-wise with those of you who tend towards being less optimistic than I am, it's a function of these two things: 1) just how much better things are, and 2) just how far away from "good" we are.

 

This is year #3 of the rebuild. I have vivid recollections of the nature of the comments on TD from just two years ago, and I'm 100% certain that we're much much closer to being "good" than a vast majority of commenters were predicting back then. One frequent contributor described the glass as not half-empty, but shattered on the floor. Another was constantly describing the farm system as having zero legit prospects. This was not two years ago. And I really think the general consensus on TD is still a bit pessimistic. And maybe I'm a bit overly optimistic, but my experience tells me my optimism is well-founded and based on realistic insights.

 

Levi, you and I most likely disagree on how far we are from being "good".  I predicted 74 wins for 2014, .500 in 2015, and "good" by 2016. Well, good if we avoid Thrylos's standards. :). How far apart are we?