Bipolar cyber-Seattle

Roto Champ Taro with a fascinating kibitz in the comments.   He's amused that considering how often USSM and D-O-V take opposite sides of debates, that usually we're on the high side and they on the low side.   I'm amused at his amusement.  ;- )

I don't disagree too vehemently.  One thing that is interesting, though, is that when D-O-V sells a player high it's taken to be part of the script, whereas when we caution on a player, it might not get the same traction.   D-O-V is pegged as the cheery website. 

I don't really disagree, LOL, and it reflects a flaw in my personality outside baseball.  Would it surprise you to hear that my fifth or sixth time on a motorcycle, I wiped out a 1000 cc Kawasaki at 60 mph with no helmet or leathers?   Which is about what would happen if George Steinbrenner bequeathed us a team...


The yin-yang observation is a strong one, and does move us to volley.

Ten Mariners I've far UNDERsold -- in the last YEAR, now -- have included:

1) Russ Branyan.  Though a fan of Branyan for years and of TTO players in general, in 2009 I argued that he'd never hit lefties and that Wakamatsu should exploit platoons to bolster the offense.  Taro, Matt and Sandy saw my error early.  I didn't listen.

2) Jason Vargas.  Assessed him as an "Iron Mike" hitting machine who would get gophered back to the minors very quickly.

3) Jarrod Washburn, especially this year.  Excoriated Armstrong unmercifully for keeping him and argued for eating his contract.

4) Franklin Gutierrez. I doubt you need any help with this one :- )

5) David Aardsma. Though a 1st-round pick, a man with a 95+ fastball and a Red Sox player, I loathe his motion and still predict a crash.

6) Raul Ibanez, who we saw as fading vs LHP's years ago and who has far outperformed our predictions.

7) The Mariner bullpen this year, which we thought could easily implode as a group.

8 ) J.J. Putz, who was yielding CF home runs on 98 fastballs and who we wrote off *just* before he found an offspeed pitch.

9) Brandon Morrow, who on draft day we called the 2nd coming of Gil Meche and a blown pick.

10) Don Wakamatsu.

That's a quick sampling of players, just in Seattle, that I've FAR undersold just this year.  Throw in Felix Hernandez, who I deep-fried as a potential trade chip the DAY before he went on his 0+ ERA tear.

But perhaps folks feel that when click over here they're going to get something with a positive feel, so the evaluations they remember are the upside calls...

That's okay with us.  LOL.


Not sure that D-O-V misses more frequently on the high side than it misses on the low side.  The list of Cedenos, Beltres, Olsons, Corcorans, and Whites that we've panned is long.  

Basically there isn't a pitcher at Tacoma who interests us at the moment.   There are about 5 pitchers in the org that we trust to get outs in Safeco:  Felix, Bedard, Washburn, Morrow, and Lowe.  Jakubauskas is workin' on it.  Kelley's intriguing.  When we don't like a player we're fine with saying so.


But to us, the question "Can you win your next pennant with this player?" can always be answered YES or NO, and we try to go one way or the other with each player.

I would respectfully suggest that the "No Cheering In the Press Box" mindset, which directs its material toward people inside baseball, *does* wind up missing more consistently on the low side, when it does miss.


Another clear bias that D-O-V lives or dies by, is the one toward special talent.  We're always going to roll the dice with Ken Griffey Jr. as opposed to with Eric Byrnes, with Tim Lincecum rather than with Ian Kennedy, with Brandon Morrow (now) rather than with Ryan Rowland-Smith, with Phillippe Aumont as opposed to Cha Seung Baek. 

We don't believe that the fondness for "replacement level players" evidences much feel for the real game on the field, but then, there are times when a guy will have signed a journeyman over Barry Zito and saved some big bucks.


=== You Got Me There, Dept. ===

Probably if we listed out 100 major D-O-V evaluations -- whether Endy Chavez is a legit LF, whether Tim Lincecum is a late-1st-round choice at best, whether Adam Dunn is worth as much as a backup center fielder, whether Jack Cust can hit a curve ball, whatever ....

The Barry Zito recommendation would rank as my least-favorite ever.  Free agent SP's in general are going to get hurt, and if you're in the market at all you're going to deal with the DL.  But I should have seen Zito's trend, no doubt.

Of course, Jarrod Washburn didn't have a trend either... :- )


Guessing an individual player's future wrong will happen at least 40% of the time, according to Craig Wright. 

D-O-V hopes that its overall grasp of the game of baseball --

... how important an ace is ... whether a backup CF could feasibly be a starter in LF ...   whether you need a #3-4 hitter ... whether chemistry exists and whether you can contend when all your players are pointing fingers ...  whether a center fielder might be catching 80 doubles more per season than some other ML center fielder ... whether a great leadoff hitter transcends his WAR or whether he doesn't... whether a Replacement Level Player is worth almost as much as your 95-RBI man, and whether you can expect to find an RLP ... whether defense might matter 4 times as much as anybody ever thought it did .... whether the local org is putting its minors pitchers through a meat grinder ... how important it is to keep the bottom of the roster fluid ...

-- is sounder than you'll usually see. 

Our paradigms are rooted in generations past, our arguments arranged so that you can reason your way to your own agreement or disagreement, and our predictions laid out clearly enough so that you can calculate our OBP.

About .218 lately.  :- )

Let's play two,

Dr D


Taro's picture

Thats my bad. DOV isn't just about hyping players. You've got your grandslams like Lincecum/Thorton/Meche/etc, and you do make your case early with players you aren't sold on. The hits are a lot more frequent than the misses.. I'm just saying, its pretty crazy how differnent DOV and USSM are. :-)

Taro's picture

Just to be clear too...
I wasn't high on Brayan's chances against LHP. I think that was mostly Sandy (and Matt too I think?). It looks like one of those rare cases were a journeyman hitter has a quantum leap in his early 30 (kinda like Ibanez). Those eye excersices seem to be paying off big time. :-)
I WAS very high on Gutierrez from the start though. I thought he was the best player involved in the Putz trade at the time (NOT Putz especially since he was in decline) with elite D in CF and a bat that was showing signs of breaking out. Hes officially a star now. Another great Z call.
 NOBODY could have predicted Washburn. I don't think even Z knew that he'd suddenly learn how to pitch. :-)


And we're not even countering your initial (superb) post, by the way.  But the analysis of the analysts is pretty fresh during the ASB.  :- )

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