How many game could a team of all rookies win? Think about it for a minute, pick a number, and then read on.
One of the chapters I wrote for Extra Inningswas about the ways that perennial losers like the Pirates and Royals get broken, and how they might eventually go about getting fixed. “Getting younger” is sometimes seen as a solution, and often it’s at least a step along the way. But early on in the chapter, I noted that youth isn’t always an immediate answer, writing, “All else being equal, a younger team is preferable to an older one, since younger players generally cost less and offer more room for improvement, but a roster composed of players who haven’t yet hit their primes is at least as unlikely to succeed as a team of players who’ve left their primes behind.” Comparing the average ages of teams that finished above or below .500, or that won or lost over 100 games, I concluded, “Too little inexperience can be even more toxic to a team than too much experience.”
It’s easy to explain why many young teams lose a lot of games: they’re learning on the job, with few players in their prime and a limited supply of highly touted and/or major-league-ready rookies. But for a few minutes, let’s ignore the way the real world works and imagine a young team too talented to occur in nature. If we could form an entire team for 2013 out of rookie-eligible players from any organization, which rookies would we pick? And armed with only the best young players in baseball, how many games would our all-rookie roster win?
Oakland's successful bullpen comprises good stories and impressive performances. So if some movie producer wants to option R.J.'s screenplay...
I write from the year 2012, 10 years ahead of your time. Much has changed about the world, as expected, but one thing should remain familiar to you: the Oakland Athletics are a good ballclub. They seem destined to make the postseason, and their bullpen leads the American League in ERA. If you think that’s incredible, just wait until you see who they’re winning with. I’ll let you find out for yourself, but let’s just say Billy Beane still has it. Now, about the purpose of this message: Only you can save our beloved planet. The first thing I need from you is…
Today's Ten Pack features more than a few notable A-ball performances in systems that could use some good news.
Tyler Austin, 1B/OF, Yankees (Low-A Charleston)
A 13th-round pick in 2010 who signed for an above-slot figure of $130,000, Austin showed impressive offensive ability in the New York-Penn League last year; on a Sally League squad loaded with much more well-known prospects, it's Austin who has stood out, going 8-for-13 with three doubles, a triple and his third home run of the year. His season line is at .438/.471/1.031 after eight contests. He has nowhere near the tools of some of his Riverdog prospect brethren, but the bat stands out, and is very much for real.
The latest rumors and (mis)information about first-round selections with draft day nearly upon us.
With just over 24 hours to go before the 2007 Amateur Draft, the top of Thursday's first round has turned into a minefield for a number of reasons, and just like clockwork this time of year, a few Oliver Stone-level rumors are flying about as well.