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  1. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThomasTomasz View Post
    Then the small market teams really need a bone thrown their way, and if not a cap (because so many people here are against it) then what is it?
    Better revenue sharing

  2. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1908_Cubs View Post
    What small market teams are having issues keeping players in FA, though? Looking through the best 10 or so FA each year dating back to 2014, I really can't find one major free agent a "small" market team lost in which the contract was probably in their best interest to not have (and I mean that simply because the contract looks bad right now). They may have dealt a few players, but in those situations, the team is recouping prospects.

    2014: Cano, Ellsbury, Choo, McCann, Santana, Tanaka
    2015: Price (traded at deadline), Heyward, Zobrist, Cueto (traded at deadline), Upton, Greinke, Davis (resigned with "small market" team), Zimmermann, Cespedes
    2016: Cespedes, Encarnacion, Bautista, Chapman, Fowler, Turner, Jansen, Melancon

    I am just having a hard time seeing where small market teams have issues with controlling their talent. Teams like Pittsburgh, Tampa, Milwaukee....they're not hemorrhaging talent in the free market. They occasionally have to trade a player right before the market, but again, a lot of these big deals to these kinds of players...they're not in the benefit of anyone to sign. We're two years past the great pitching class of 2015, and Cueto was awful last year, Price was awful last year, Zimmermann awful, Greinke was really good in his second year...but 3 of the 4 of those deals I'm sure using history (hell the Heyward contract, too), the teams would probably have a different feeling about those deals (SF may still think Cueto can bounce back, which I can see).

    Hell, the Padres and the Royals, two small market teams are two of the finalists on Hosmer.

    Yes the O's are set to lose Machado, but I think that he'd be testing FA in almost any situation (he's determined to hit the market).

    But I think it's largely a fallacy that small market teams are losing players because they can't retain them (the Marlins are their own beast). The players they lose tend to be players on their back end of their shelf life
    Exactly.

    Signing anyone long term is killer.

    A player is best before they are 30 in baseball. The teams that develop and acquire young talent and capitalize on it, should reap the rewards.


    The teams that consistently develop their own talent, are also the best ran teams.

    Yankees, Dodgers, Cardinals, Giants, Cubs, Red Sox

    Look at the best players on each of those teams.....they weren't brought in through free agency.

    These are large market teams, but they are developing their own long term talents through the draft and great, cheap finds.
    Last edited by Jeffy25; 01-07-2018 at 06:13 PM.

  3. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dugmet View Post
    Allowing players to escape restrictive team control 2 years earlier to take advantage of a free market is absolutely something the owners could use as a negotiating point in the next CBA.

    How many players end up playing through age 35? Let them make their bank when they are most productive and active.


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    The owners would never do this.

  4. #49
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    Proposal: Change to Free Agency

    Quote Originally Posted by mariner4life View Post
    The owners would never do this.
    I dunno. For one thing I suggested that they would ask the players back for something in return. It would be significant.

    Also, I think owners would rather pay the premium dollars when players are in their prime rather than past their prime ó though Im not sure the owners know how to control themselves anyway.


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  5. #50
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    Iím not neccesarily proposing a hard cap. And I actually donít mind the way baseball is set up. But the old just draft and develop talent better argument is tired and old in my mind. Of course the best teams need to draft and develop players internally. The best way to compete is to have talented players on cheap deals. And the largest payroll in baseball canít overcome the failure to develop your own guys.

    But the advantage the big markets have isnít that part of it. Because that part of it is balanced. Sure, small markets get an extra competitive balance pick here and there, but I hardly think thatís a game changer. Where the big markets have the advantage is retaining their developed talent and supplementing that with free agents. Small market teams donít have that same ability.

    The cubs are the perfect example. Their core was drafted and they did an incredible job of doing that. I donít want to take that away from them at all. But what they are able to do is supplement the roster. A small market team, knowing that their young talent is due for major raises in coming years.

    If the cubs were say the rays, the rays would probably not have been able to sign Hayward, zobrist and Lester. They probably wouldnít also be in on Darvish or have the ability to resign arrieta. And you can argue those moves didnít all work out, heyward in particular. But the small teams donít even really have as much of a choice.

    Itís the same with acquiring talent. The cubs very smartly loaded up on positional talent because they clearly thought they could evaluate and develop that better. And thatís a great job by them. But they are able to do that knowing theyíll have the money to sign free agent pitching if need be.

    I feel like the brewers to a lesser extent did what the cubs did. They had a very talented class of positional guys close together in Braun, fielder, Hart, hardy and weeks. Lucroy followed close behind as well. But instead of signing free agents, they had to milk the farm of guys like alcides Escobar, Lorenzo Cain, Jake Odorizzi and Brett Lawrie to get pitching. Fielder left after they made the nlcs and they traded grienke a year later for not much since he only had half a year left on his contract.

    But the point isnít woe is me as a brewers fan. You can argue bad drafting after that point also hurt us and all of that. But the fact of it is we did something similar to what the cubs are doing. The main difference is the ability to supplement the roster with outside free agents and most likely, the ability to retain those guys on 2nd contracts. The brewers had to basically go all in on a 1-2 year window whereas the cubs most likely wonít have to. Their window should stay open for awhile, even if their drafting suffers.

    And thatís really the point Iím trying to illustrate. The playing field is basically level for everything. Small market teams get revenue sharing and a few extra draft picks. But at the end of the day, the small markets donít really have a major advantage in any aspect of baseball. But the big markets do. They have the ability to carry much larger payrolls. So to me, it feels like in order to consistently compete, small markets need to be perfect. They need to hit on a high rate or draft picks, trade guys at the right time and avoid bad contracts. Those are also things that the big markets need to do, but the margin for error is larger. They just simply need to be great, not perfect in that sense because they can supplement with free agency or eat a contract if they screw up.
    Last edited by crewfan13; 01-12-2018 at 08:27 PM.

  6. #51
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    You bring up the Cubs signing Heyward, Zobrist and Lester, but have you seen how those contracts have been working out? Heyward's been awful and you could consider him to be the absolute worst FA signing in franchise history in terms of a money/value standpoind. Zobrist had a great first year and was basically worthless last year (whether due to injury or age is yet to be seen. It could be either) and Lester just posted his worst season since 2011 and could be on the decline (though there's reason to believe he's not). At best you have one horrible contract, but I'm not sure Zobrist is going to rebound at his age (and has 2 more years on his contract). Two of those players helped them win a WS (Heyward probably more of an anchor than a help) and the year later, two were really bad and the other could be declining.

    The Cubs won a W.S. because they drafted well (Bryant, Schwarber, Baez, Almora, Russell) developed international talent well (Torres was dealt for Chapman, Contreras), traded well (Arrieta, Hendricks, Rizzo, Strop, Edwards). They added a few last pieces in the market that the Rays may not have been able to do, but out of the major FA contracts they've handed out, we're two - three years into most of them...and name me one that you could say is a good contract right now? Lester? Then what? The Cubs are a very good team right now because they've drafted, developed and traded smartly. The FA was bonus in many ways.

    You say the Brewers had to milk their minor leagues to get pitching...the Cubs added Jon Lester via FA to a big deal. Lackey was on a short 2 year contract, they signed guys like Brett Anderson to be the 5th guy last year, Jason Hammel the season prior. Their rotation was not a FA rotation. They traded really smartly. They got lucky in ways, but they dealt for Arrieta. They dealt for Hendricks. They dealt for Quintana. They've only signed Chatwood, on a 3 year $12m a year contract this season. I think you're over blowing what the Cubs have done in the market and where they got good from.
    Last edited by 1908_Cubs; 01-13-2018 at 04:00 PM.
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  7. #52
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    In 2016, Lester was the mvp of the NLCS and zobrist was the mvp of the World Series.

    And thatís exactly the point. As a large market, you can supplement your team like that. The Cubs have a great young team, but thereís a real argument that they wouldnít have a ring yet without free agents. And maybe they would, but itís impossible to say. But if they were a small market, signing those deals would have been difficult. And had they signed a bad deal like heyward would have sunk the team.

    And everyone focuses on whether or not the deal is a good deal long term. But when youíre a small market who rarely has a chance to compete for a World Series. Itís not always about the long term deal working out. Itís about maximizing your window. The brewers won 96 games in fielders last season. They havenít made the playoffs since then. Who knows, had they retained prince and grienke, then maybe they would have had a chance to stay relevant for another year or two. And who knows, maybe things break differently and they end up competing. That would have made it worth it, even if the contracts, fielders in particular, would have likely aged poorly.

    My point isnít to sound like Iím crying as a brewers fan and I hate the cubs. Iím not trying to say woe is me or anything. But the point is that thereís no way to argue its a fair or even system. Small markets get an occasional extra competitive balance pick and some revenue sharing dollars, but the cost of that is likely lower payrolls and lesser ability to retain talent. Big markets have to give up some tax dollars, but have the ability to retain their own players and can supplemen rosters with free agency.

    I never said the cubs won strictly due to free agency. And rarely do big markets truly buy a ring. They do need to draft a develop well. But thatís the same thing for small markets. Take away any of the free agent signings from the cubs. And move that entire roster pre free agent additions and that entire front office to Tampa or Oakland or Milwaukee or another small market. If you did that, do you really think those markets would have been able to have been as competitive as the cubs have been? And do you truly believe they would be able to retain the same level of talent that the cubs likely will be able to?

    And to me thatís the point. This has been a very cubs vs brewers focused post, but it was meant to use those two franchises as an example. You can flop out any small market vs any huge market. In all cases, you need to build through young players and smart trades. But small markets have only a tiny advantage in that regard because of the extra pick every couple years. But once you put that roster together, the big markets have a massive advantage in supplementing hat roster and retaining it long term. And thatís where the descrepancy lies.

  8. #53
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    And itís not like itís just a cubs thing. The Yankees are the same way. The Yankees built an awesome young team. They werenít quite able to get over the hump last year. But they can afford to take on Stantonís deal now. And that probably doesnít even rule them out from going after a Manny Machado next year.

    And thatís the ultimate point. The best way to build a roster is through the draft and to develop guys. Maximize trade value and stuff like that. Iím in no way arguing that. Itís once that roster is built that the big markets get a huge advantage. The Yankees will probably be good for like 10 years with their farm, young players and ability to sign free agents. If you move that team to a small market, the window is probably closer to 4 years, depending where guys are in arbitration.

  9. #54
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    Its hard to suggest that the new compensation system for FA doesn't benefit big market teams though. They don't even give up a 1st round pick when they sign a QO FA anymore. Could you imagine losing a guy like Lindor and only getting a 2nd and 5th round pick as compensation?

  10. #55
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    Hard cap is the only way to truly do it. Iím not a fan of the hard cap at all, but itís really the only way to really make it sort of fair.

    My point is more that I hate when bigger market fans comeback to baseballís system favoring the bigger markets is ďjust draft and develop better.Ē

  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by crewfan13 View Post
    Hard cap is the only way to truly do it. Iím not a fan of the hard cap at all, but itís really the only way to really make it sort of fair.

    My point is more that I hate when bigger market fans comeback to baseballís system favoring the bigger markets is ďjust draft and develop better.Ē
    I like the points you are making, and I agree with them. Look at the Pirates, they had a plan to compete last year but now are selling their core, even with 1-2 years left for some of them, because they know those players like Gerrit Cole are not going to re-sign in Pittsburgh. The cores for the teams that can spend big money have a much larger window because, not only are you not worried about being able to re-sign players, but you can also add to the core, and don't have to worry as much about making mistakes.

    I know the luxury tax level is referred to as a cap by some, but the only reason teams are trying to get under it are to reset for their FA runs with Harper, Machado and likely Kershaw. We need a hard cap and a hard floor.

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by crewfan13 View Post
    In 2016, Lester was the mvp of the NLCS and zobrist was the mvp of the World Series.

    And thatís exactly the point. As a large market, you can supplement your team like that. The Cubs have a great young team, but thereís a real argument that they wouldnít have a ring yet without free agents. And maybe they would, but itís impossible to say. But if they were a small market, signing those deals would have been difficult. And had they signed a bad deal like heyward would have sunk the team.
    You said it best. It's impossible to say. So you can't really say they probably would or wouldn't have with or without them. We know they won a W.S. with them. However, at least two of those contracts are holding the Cubs back today with nearly $35m wrapped up in two players who were worth less than 1.5 fWAR cumulative wins.

    And everyone focuses on whether or not the deal is a good deal long term. But when youíre a small market who rarely has a chance to compete for a World Series. Itís not always about the long term deal working out. Itís about maximizing your window. The brewers won 96 games in fielders last season. They havenít made the playoffs since then. Who knows, had they retained prince and grienke, then maybe they would have had a chance to stay relevant for another year or two. And who knows, maybe things break differently and they end up competing. That would have made it worth it, even if the contracts, fielders in particular, would have likely aged poorly.

    My point isnít to sound like Iím crying as a brewers fan and I hate the cubs. Iím not trying to say woe is me or anything. But the point is that thereís no way to argue its a fair or even system. Small markets get an occasional extra competitive balance pick and some revenue sharing dollars, but the cost of that is likely lower payrolls and lesser ability to retain talent. Big markets have to give up some tax dollars, but have the ability to retain their own players and can supplemen rosters with free agency.
    But look at those players that are being signed in FA and look at who the teams are who are losing players. Do you think anyone in their right minds wants the contracts the "big market teams" have signed recently? Look at the last 2 years of FA and think "do I wish the Brewers were a big market team to have any of them"?

    Zimmermann: 5/$118m
    Heyward: 8/$180m
    Price: 7/$217m
    Leake: 5/$80m
    Cueto: 6/$130m
    Chen: 5/$80m
    Cespedes: 4/$110m
    Desmond: 5/$70m
    Melancon: 4/$62m

    You want any of those guys? I don't. I wouldn't. Yes, big market teams can go supplement their teams better. But look at what they're supplementing it with. They're supplementing them with players who are 1/2 years into their contract and they don't want any more. I'm not suggesting that having money is a bad thing, but what player up there is a small market team missing? Who is saying "Damn, really wish I'd have been able to keep PLAYER X?" Almost every one of those players are on teams who are unhappy with the return, many of those teams are actively looking to dump those players on anyone else.

    Small market teams do have issues in keeping a player every so often, but for the most part, small market teams are losing these players at the right time. Every so often you get a situation like Manny Machado, and this sucks for Baltimore (granted, they should trade him and get a haul back, but that's an ownership issue), but there aren't many times where small market teams are losing players in their mid-20's who are franchise changers. Even the Pirates...look at who they're looking to move? They dealt Cole, but it's probably their fault for getting such a crap return. Who else? They traded Melancon and got back Rivero, and they may dealt MucCutcheon at age 32, who probably can't play CF legitimately anymore, and who has shown a lot of signs of decline lately. I don't think they are bad off. They'd be way better if they didn't deal Cole for what they did, imo.
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  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by crewfan13 View Post
    Hard cap is the only way to truly do it. Iím not a fan of the hard cap at all, but itís really the only way to really make it sort of fair.

    My point is more that I hate when bigger market fans comeback to baseballís system favoring the bigger markets is ďjust draft and develop better.Ē
    A hard cap only makes it fair for ownership and teams. It makes it incredibly unfair for players when you cap their potential earnings. Secondly, are you sure it makes it "fair"? You have a capped sport that has been completely dominated by a single franchise for the last 12-15 years (Patriots), another capped sport that is dealing with players going to one of 5 franchises and is being dominated by 2-3 of them (NBA). Baseball has no cap and has easily the most parity in that same amount of time. Cap's haven't stopped unfair issues in these sports. It won't fix it in baseball.
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  14. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1908_Cubs View Post
    A hard cap only makes it fair for ownership and teams. It makes it incredibly unfair for players when you cap their potential earnings. Secondly, are you sure it makes it "fair"? You have a capped sport that has been completely dominated by a single franchise for the last 12-15 years (Patriots), another capped sport that is dealing with players going to one of 5 franchises and is being dominated by 2-3 of them (NBA). Baseball has no cap and has easily the most parity in that same amount of time. Cap's haven't stopped unfair issues in these sports. It won't fix it in baseball.
    Exactly, all of this.

    The idea of a cap, to improve parity in the only sport with great parity is always comical. People are interested in fixing something that isn't broke.

  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by crewfan13 View Post
    Hard cap is the only way to truly do it. Iím not a fan of the hard cap at all, but itís really the only way to really make it sort of fair.

    My point is more that I hate when bigger market fans comeback to baseballís system favoring the bigger markets is ďjust draft and develop better.Ē
    You've made some excellent points. Of course drafting and developing players is the key but the spending can not be totally ignored. I always find it weird when a poster tries to claim that money has no bearing on the sport.
    Its also funny how fans remember history and become revisionists. Team on the cusp of winning adds expensive veterans and wins the world serious then many years later claim it was a horrible contract when he regresses.

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