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Article: Blind faith vs. evidence and reason

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#1 Shane Wahl

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 05:32 PM

You can view the page at http://www.twinsdail...ence-and-reason

#2 Alex

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:09 PM

Great article, and I was just about to post a shorter version in the game thread. It's less about a guy like Gray being horrible than it is about the concern this puts in the Twins ability or method of evaluating players.

People who were paying attention to the evidence early on haven't been surprised that Willingham has done well (maybe even better) or that that Doumit has been a successful signing. However, there was a ton of concern about Marquis, Dozier being ready, and Jeff Gray. The only person who has defied the evidence has been Deduno.

#3 nokomismod

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:10 PM

Shanewahl, thank you for posting this. I have almost forgotten about Slama, but there must be something keeping this guy from getting a legitimate shot. Why not this season??

#4 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:20 PM

it is one of the more mind boggling (non) decisions this organization has made.
All they have to do is give him a full month of 10gms (10/12innings) to silence the Slama-ites or for him to prove the evaluators wrong

#5 IdahoPilgrim

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:28 PM

This is basically the whole moneyball argument again - what should we trust more, raw statistics or evaluation by those who (theoretically) have the experience and knowledge of the game to "separate the wheat from the chaff."

Perhaps neither is infallible, and both have to be involved. I fully admit that sometimes raw numbers can force us to face unpleasant truths about ourselves or our abilities (I am made woefully aware of this every time I step on the bathroom scale:)), but statistics themselves also can be deceptive, and I would never make a decision solely on them.

#6 Seth Stohs

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:47 PM

Shanewahl, thank you for posting this. I have almost forgotten about Slama, but there must be something keeping this guy from getting a legitimate shot. Why not this season??


Well, he did miss 2 months this year with a broken leg, suffered on a hard ground ball back at him by Miguel Tejada. I have to believe that if he was healthy, he would have got a legitimate 2-3 month look. He's been good again and should be up.

I've never understood it... Based on his K-Rates, I'd say that big league hitters should be made to prove that they can hit him at this point. Enough guys who don't put up Slama numbers get chances because of "stuff", but Slama can't get a real chance despite unbelievable numbers in AAA? Makes no sense whatsoever. Maybe the Twins will prove to be right in this case too. But he's earned a chance.

Scary thing is that because of when he signed, he can't become a minor league free agent until AFTER the 2013 season. Poor guy!

#7 Alex

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:27 PM

This is basically the whole moneyball argument again - what should we trust more, raw statistics or evaluation by those who (theoretically) have the experience and knowledge of the game to "separate the wheat from the chaff."

Perhaps neither is infallible, and both have to be involved. I fully admit that sometimes raw numbers can force us to face unpleasant truths about ourselves or our abilities (I am made woefully aware of this every time I step on the bathroom scale:)), but statistics themselves also can be deceptive, and I would never make a decision solely on them.


Statistics can also tell you exactly what we see, and that's part of the point of the article. If we believe that the Twins are right in trotting out a player like Gray while Slama rots in Rochester, we have blind faith. I've no problem trusting scouting if it turns out to be correct, but in the Twins case, I think we can see that it's not going very well.

#8 Lonestar

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:31 PM

At first they viewed Slama as a ROOGY. Now they view him as a One-Inning Only guy.

#9 COtwin

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:37 PM

Sheer obstinacy. I just watched today's game and I logged in to see if Gray was DFAd. He is still getting chances after nine home runs given up. Free Slama! Although we are probably what is keeping him down. Can't have the possability that the unwashed masses might be right on this :).

#10 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:38 PM

if they dont bring him up in Sept, wonder if he'd ask for his release

#11 Jim H

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:44 PM

If you are going to write articles like this, it is only fair to note that Slama has missed large chunks of both this year and last year. I suspect the Twins do indeed view him as a one inning guy. Max effort, uses a lot pitches per inning, been hurt a lot, has control issues. If you run him out there for 3 innings, he is likely unavailable for nearly a week. Those factors help explain why Waltrip was called up instead of Slama.

It is also fair to note that when he was dropped from the 40 man roster, nobody claimed him. He isn't a top prospect. That doesn't mean he can't succeed in the majors, and I hope he does. I just think that no great injustice is being done here.

#12 Jim H

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:51 PM

Sorry for misspelling Waldrop.

#13 Jim H

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:59 PM

As a side note, I don't care for this style of writing. It reminds of Aaron Gleeman. There are clear reasons why the Twins have not promoted Slama. Now you don't have to agree with them, but when you don't address them or even acknowledge that they are there, you reduce the credibility of your post.

#14 Mike Sixel

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:10 PM

So a one inning guy that pitches only 45 innings in the 9th is worth millions, but a one inning guy that can get guys out in the 7th or 8th (unlike Gray and others, who, ya, can pitch more than one inning but can't get people out when they do) isn't worth anything? Mind boggling. Give the guy a chance, and see if his success can translate or not. What the heck do they have to lose, exactly? The clear reasons for not promoting him are clearly stated, they think the stats are lying, and he's not good enough to get out MLB pitchers because his pitches don't move enough, despite the fact that he has succeeded at every level.

#15 Top Gun

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:11 PM

It's clear to see that the Twins don't know what there are doing.

#16 righty8383

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 08:20 PM

Slama gave up a hit and struck out only 1 of the 7 batters he faced today. I think he's losing it.:P

#17 Andrew Bryz-Gornia

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:03 PM

It seems pretty clear that the Twins don't trust Slama's stuff. From what I've heard, he has 3 pitches: a straight, low-90s fastball, a pretty slow slurve, and a splitter. It also sounds like his success has come from a little deception in his delivery, and the Twins seem to think that this deception will not help him any more in the majors. Also, while it's been in very little time, he seems to have the makings of an extreme flyball pitcher. In other words, he could become homer-prone.

However, the Twins have been bad for nearly 2 years now, and this is the perfect time to give someone like Slama a shot. His presence is not going to cost the team a playoff spot, and someone like Jeff Gray is merely filling a roster spot for the remainder of the season. Even Gray's one thing he did fairly well - induce grounders - has deserted him this year.

I disagree with the idea that the Twins are afraid of being wrong, however. I'm sure if Slama succeeded, they would be thrilled. As I mentioned before, I'm sure the issue is that they think Slama has no chance of being a successful pitcher in the majors, and as someone else mentioned, it's pretty clear other teams feel the same way as Slama cleared waivers when he was removed from the 40-man roster last offseason.

#18 greengoblinrulz

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:20 PM

It seems pretty clear that the Twins don't trust Slama's stuff. From what I've heard, he has 3 pitches: a straight, low-90s fastball, a pretty slow slurve, and a splitter. It also sounds like his success has come from a little deception in his delivery, and the Twins seem to think that this deception will not help him any more in the majors. Also, while it's been in very little time, he seems to have the makings of an extreme flyball pitcher. In other words, he could become homer-prone.

However, the Twins have been bad for nearly 2 years now, and this is the perfect time to give someone like Slama a shot. His presence is not going to cost the team a playoff spot, and someone like Jeff Gray is merely filling a roster spot for the remainder of the season. Even Gray's one thing he did fairly well - induce grounders - has deserted him this year.

I disagree with the idea that the Twins are afraid of being wrong, however. I'm sure if Slama succeeded, they would be thrilled. As I mentioned before, I'm sure the issue is that they think Slama has no chance of being a successful pitcher in the majors, and as someone else mentioned, it's pretty clear other teams feel the same way as Slama cleared waivers when he was removed from the 40-man roster last offseason.

part of the problem is also THEY think/thought that Jeff Gray could be a successful pitcher. Pretty much they should KNOW that answer by now.
As a fan, I would like to KNOW if Slama can get MLB hitters out instead of being told he cant.

#19 beckmt

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:26 PM

Slama is not regarded by the Twins brass as a major league pitcher. He will have to prove himself in another origanization. If he does the 'free Slama' brigade can say 'I told you so'. Until that time comes, can we drop this topic, it's a waste of time and breath.

#20 Rosterman

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:47 PM

No, no, no...not a waste of time and breath. Never give up...hope.