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The super Astros fall from grace

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  • #31
    I don't see why players would be punished. What are they supposed to do when the astros front office sets up something like that? Are they supposed to blow the whistle and risk losing their job?

    sure they participated knowingly but this was set up by the front office and manager and the players were in a tough spot.
    I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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    • #32
      Originally posted by dominik View Post
      I don't see why players would be punished. What are they supposed to do when the astros front office sets up something like that? Are they supposed to blow the whistle and risk losing their job?

      sure they participated knowingly but this was set up by the front office and manager and the players were in a tough spot.
      If you're a star player, do you really want to destroy your legacy by participating?
      Using a stolen chant from Boston Celtics fans whenever an L.A. team is playing up there just reeks of inferiority complex.

      If hitting a baseball is the toughest thing to do in sports, then pitching must be the easiest thing to do in sports.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by dominik View Post
        I don't see why players would be punished. What are they supposed to do when the astros front office sets up something like that? Are they supposed to blow the whistle and risk losing their job?

        sure they participated knowingly but this was set up by the front office and manager and the players were in a tough spot.
        Oh, come on. If they know it's cheating, then yes, they should blow the whistle. If they can't do that, the least they can do is refuse to go along.

        There's a clear analogy here with team-wide doping systems in pro cycling, e.g., the one that Lance Armstrong and Johan Bruyneel (the directeur sportif, or manager, of the team) instituted. All the riders on the team for which convincing evidence of doping was obtained were stripped of some results and/or sanctioned in other ways. They knew damned well what they were doing, and that it was cheating.

        You are right about being in a tough spot. Many promising riders have been faced with a choice either to dope or probably not be able to succeed in the sport. But that doesn't excuse them from being subject to sanctions.

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        • #34
          So with Cole all but signing on the bottom line for another team, how will the Astros do in 2020?

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          • #35
            Pretty good, they still have greinke and verlander in their rotation and they will probably sign at least a solid 3 starter.
            I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by dominik View Post
              Not a good last year from a PR perspective.

              A year ago they were the hottest thing in sports with the best analytics and player development and a monster team and that still is true but a series of incidents made the Astros not exactly the most liked team in baseball.

              -Last year they traded for roberto osuna for a discount price after a DV incident

              -threw out a detroit journalist this year because verlander had a beef with him

              -the taubman incident

              -it seems they were stealing signs at least in 2017 using electronic equipment

              they are also not exactly popular in the professional baseball industry as they fired a lot of old school scouting personnel (which probably was a good albeit not popular move).

              Are the astros the new evil empire like the early 00s yanks or the Patriots in football?
              No, the Astros aren't quite in the class of the Yankees as far as an Evil Empire goes, even with three straight 100 win Astros seasons. Nobody was hated as much as he 1996-2007 New York Yankees under Joe Torre were and plenty of people celebrated when they lost the playoffs to Cleveland in 1997 and 2007, lost a playoff or two to the Tigers and when they lost the 2001 and 2003 World Series to the Diamondbacks and Marlins, respectively and when they lost the American League Championship this year, when they los tvia a sudden death home run by Houston's Jose Altuve.. They won their division Their signing of Gerrit Cole is going to trigger a whole new wave of Yankees Haters, who hate when teams buy championships.
              (but that is the way of the world these days isn't it).
              14 times out of 17 between 1996 and 2012 the YANKEES had first-place finishes to capture the A.L.East division title (falling short only in 2007, 2008, and 2010) and now after a six year drought (2013 to 2018) they're back at it again by winning the A.L.East 2019 division title, their first since 2012.
              Last edited by 1954 Phils; 12-11-2019, 07:33 AM.

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              • #37
                Originally posted by pedrosrotatorcuff View Post
                So with Cole all but signing on the bottom line for another team, how will the Astros do in 2020?
                Probably the 1st-3rd best record in baseball.

                They won 107 with Cole having a 7 WAR seasons. The 5th guy in is likely to be worth 2 wins, They are still a near win team with random variation leaving them anywhere between, say 95 and 105 wins.
                Last edited by Bothrops Atrox; 12-11-2019, 12:49 PM.
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                • #38
                  The season was more than half over when the Astros acquired Greinke, and the team was doing fine with just two superstar pitchers. And remember that the Astros had a lot of their best players out with injuries for large chunks of time: Altuve, Springer, Correa, e.g. They won't miss a beat in the regular season, though not having that third ace in the postseason will hurt a little.

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                  • #39
                    Another interesting fact about luhnow is a bit older but I just read in the book "mvp machine " (a book about the advances in player training the last 5 years) that luhnow wanted to draft convicted child molester luke heimlich and needed to be talked out of doing it.

                    the book doesn't specify who talked him out of it but sounds like an owner veto. The book also said there was pushback against osuna but luhnow did it anyway.

                    this is nothing illegal of course but fits into this could hearted numbers guy image who fired all the scouts and only cares about max value.

                    This could be seen as the downside of sabermetrics going from the weird haird math genius in the cellar to ice cold wall street guys who would do everything for 1 percent more money.

                    I'm a numbers guy but this had to happen at some point just like it happened to big companies decades ago.
                    I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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                    • #40
                      One thing for sure. We have seen some great teams over the years and word dynasty crops up.
                      But how many of these great teams have even repeated, even two in a row.
                      In the AL you have to go back decades, Oakland and the Yanks a couple of times.

                      Spare me the nonsense about breaks and luck, do we just take something a way from some great Oakland and Yankee teams.

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by dominik View Post
                        Another interesting fact about luhnow is a bit older but I just read in the book "mvp machine " (a book about the advances in player training the last 5 years) that luhnow wanted to draft convicted child molester luke heimlich and needed to be talked out of doing it.

                        the book doesn't specify who talked him out of it but sounds like an owner veto. The book also said there was pushback against osuna but luhnow did it anyway.

                        this is nothing illegal of course but fits into this could hearted numbers guy image who fired all the scouts and only cares about max value.

                        This could be seen as the downside of sabermetrics going from the weird haird math genius in the cellar to ice cold wall street guys who would do everything for 1 percent more money.

                        I'm a numbers guy but this had to happen at some point just like it happened to big companies decades ago.
                        Great observation dominik. I've also noticed the cold way that analytically minded front offices have treated players, baseball people and anyone that disagrees with them in general. Meet the new boss same as the old boss, as The Who said.
                        "No matter how great you were once upon a time — the years go by, and men forget,” - W. A. Phelon in Baseball Magazine in 1915. “Ross Barnes, forty years ago, was as great as Cobb or Wagner ever dared to be. Had scores been kept then as now, he would have seemed incomparably marvelous.”

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                        • #42
                          I remember the passage in Moneyball where they described the concept of "putting a Milo" on a player. It was a way of weeding out potential draft picks who had off-field issues that made them questionable prospects. I guess rolling the dice on guys like that is easier when your team has more money to spend.
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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by ian2813 View Post
                            I remember the passage in Moneyball where they described the concept of "putting a Milo" on a player. It was a way of weeding out potential draft picks who had off-field issues that made them questionable prospects. I guess rolling the dice on guys like that is easier when your team has more money to spend.
                            That is a math equation too. Off Field issues increase the bust Potential and if they have the same price you prefer the better makeup guy. However when other teams do that too the discount on "damaged goods" might be so good that you can risk it for the upside. Reportedly the rays for example target make up issue guys when the discount is good enough.

                            sabermetrics guys are not heartless robots, they of course prefer good people but they have to make a math equation whether the cost or benefit of getting a questionable guy is higher. Luhnow certainly would have preferred a closer with no issues over osuna but he felt the price was too good to pass up because a closer of this quality and age would have required a top20 overall prospect (probably alvarez or tucker) and more while osuna was much cheaper.
                            I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by abolishthedh View Post
                              There is an old saying in baseball that if you are not trying to cheat by stealing signs/ altering the ball on the mound/ or attempting "neighborhood" plays on putouts, then you aren't really trying. Even corking bats was just another form of this stuff. I will admit that PED use was an escalation of cheating, but that wasn't in the name of winning, IMHO. PED use in any sport is more about establishing oneself in the sport, and establishing a basis for a big contract. This is true in baseball, just as any other sport. PED use is a reflection of the individual and not of the team. Fans who believe Tony LaRussa knew about his guys using PEDs will believe that, but I just don't. Baseball and cheating on the field will always exist, and it is part of the lore of the game.
                              Are you saying that LaRussa didn't know that his players roided?

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                              • #45
                                Originally posted by JR Hart View Post

                                Are you saying that LaRussa didn't know that his players roided?
                                Of course he did.

                                As did Joe Torre and his endless parade of All Star PED users as did Bobby Cox and Dusty Baker and Lou Pinella and Jim Leyland and...
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