Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The perfect article for this series

Reds and Nats fans alike will take great (dis)pleasure in reading Bowden's latest column in the Examiner.
In the past, I have never been afraid to trade proven major league talent for unproven minor league talent that can help your organization in the long run. For example, I traded Dave Burba for Sean Casey; Jeff Shaw for Paul Konerko; Elmer Dessens for Felipe Lopez; Rob Bell for Edwin Encarnacion; John Smiley for Danny Graves; and Jeff Brantley for Dmitri Young. All of those deals received immediate public criticism. However, all worked out in helping build for the future. The deals all reduced payroll and all produced good young players that would help for years.
Umm...what planet is Jimbo on? Last time I checked the roster, only Lopez and Ed-E were on it. Did I miss a World Championship team in the last decade or something? Did Konerko or Dessens or Graves or Young get us a World Series ring? (The Reds, NOT the White Sox.)


Hat tip: Curly W


JinAZ said...

Interesting thing about that list: He traded away six pitchers and acquired 5 hitters and 1 pitcher in return. Granted, all were (or were dealt for: konerko for cameron for griffey) productive hitters for us. But is it any wonder why the Reds are such an offense-biased ballclub?

Also, several of those trades involved other players. For example, Bowden's prise in the Rob Bell trade was actually not Encarnacion (though he should get some credit for snagging him as a throw-in), but rather Ruben Mateo. Who never amounted to anything.

DevilsAdvocate said...

Bowden was unafraid to make trades and all sorts of roster moves. I'll give him that one freely. But his list is ridiculous.

He takes credit for trading Jeff Shaw for Paul Konerko? Are you kidding me? Jeff Shaw was a very good relief pitcher at the time and remained so until he retired just three years later, not due to performance but because he decided that his family was more important than the cattle-selling business of baseball (the trade really soured him on MLB). I recall that he had just signed a below-market contract extension to stay with the Reds because he was happy there, liked being in Cincinnati. (And that's not necessarily common among players - remember Arroyo's comments upon learning of his trade?)

Meanwhile, we got Konerko, and what did he do with him? Despite destroying the ball that year at Albuquerque and then killing it at Indianapolis, Bowden marginalized him as a prospect after a cup of coffee with the Reds didn't yield instant results and clearly revealed him to be a subpar-fielding 3b. So JB traded him to the White Sox after just half a season with the Reds' organization. So he takes credit for getting him, but conveniently forgets about the fact that he traded him away just four months later. And jinAZ notes that trade, but if Bowden's not going to mention it, I'm definitely not going to give him any credit for who was involved in that trade.

His strategy struck me as seemingly "throw a bunch of stuff at the wall and see what sticks." If he only mentions 6 trades from his many transaction-packed years as a GM (12?), that's not saying a whole lot about his success ratio. A .400 average is extraordinarily great for a hitter, but extraordinarily awful for a GM. And he mentions nothing from his tenure in DC.

On the plus side for you as a by-residence Nationals fan, I sincerely doubt you will have Jim Bowden to kick around much longer.

Rant over.