Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dodgers President Hugh Mannion:

"It's strange to me to see teams operate in a way where they bid against themselves for unknown talent, and at the same time, you have this plethora of guys in the system that maybe are not developing appropriately, i.e. a [Ronald] Belisario. That's interesting stuff to me. I think it's really fascinating. It's probably the upside of having very tough economic times."

How is this at all coherent for a franchise that gave away Tony Abreu a few months ago so it wouldn't be tempted to keep Charlie Haeger in its rotation? This cat wants to tout any ol' success as evidence of a brilliant process.

"So to take a guy and say, we're going to offer him arbitration, and put yourself in a position where you may have been able to acquire a similar pitcher for less money later on, isn't a prudent use of a civic asset. It doesn't make sense to do that, if you're a good steward for your franchise."

So it does not make sense to attempt to acquire draft picks to invest in future talent and/or future trade needs because the risk is overpaying a veteran pitcher for one season. Yet it does make sense to overpay for a veteran pitcher if that pitcher's salary is being paid for by Arizona and LA only has to overpay in talent? It is felicitous that Mannion does not talk about "prudent use of a civic asset" in terms of value or good to the franchise but rather simply says money. The "good steward for your franchise" is not the cat who offers arbitration figuring that Wolf is very likely to receive a larger offer and take it. This is because doing so requires spending on the part of the franchise. Money will be spent on the arbitrated salary or money must be spent to scout extra players and money will likely be spent to sign the draft picks. Your stewardship depends upon recognizing that the crucial respect of a fluid system is that committing to spending money at any points quickly becomes a commitment to spend more money to protect that investment. As such, a good steward refuses the possible benefits of investing in the future because such an investment will often require focus - "appropriate development," and, hence, resources. It is better for the Mannionian steward to wait out the discarded and inappropriately developed, devote meager resources to their reclamation, and ideally limit their role and play up their limitations in the press so they will not cost the franchise much money. From Belisario to Padilla, it is the new Dodger Way, talent cheaply acquired so it can be treated cheaply by management. The type of mobile labor required by the fluidity of these trying economic times. Players whose arbitration clock we have started are to be resented and trashed unless they are producing results, and they will be discarded for Experienced Veterans when someone else will foot the bill.


Post a Comment

<< Home