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Old 02-23-2018, 11:56 AM   #1
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Mlb 2018

There will be baseball on my screen in about 15 minutes. Spring is coming. The not so hot stove is over, while owners continue to get richer. And the Astros juggernaut is going to steamroll the AL. Discuss!
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Old 02-26-2018, 06:41 PM   #2
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I like baseball
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Old 02-27-2018, 03:02 AM   #3
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Same
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Old 02-27-2018, 04:51 PM   #4
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Baseball is pretty good.
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Old 03-02-2018, 01:05 PM   #5
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I wonder how long Arrieta, Lynn, and Cobb will hold out. If they wait til after the draft (which I don’t think will happen, but it would be interesting), they could be “free” mid season upgrades for contenders.
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Old 03-06-2018, 07:04 AM   #6
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I know they're meaningless spring training game, but Matt Harvey reporting to camp in shape and throwing well makes me smile
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Old 03-06-2018, 08:30 AM   #7
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I wonder how long Arrieta, Lynn, and Cobb will hold out. If they wait til after the draft (which I don’t think will happen, but it would be interesting), they could be “free” mid season upgrades for contenders.
The Phillies should have signed one of them weeks ago. I'm embarrassed that they are participating in this clear anti-labor collusion. Especially since their rotation competition in camp is "Aaron Nola and 15 AAAA starters."
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Old 03-06-2018, 12:58 PM   #8
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The most frustrating part of this offseason has been to read writers and fans rationalize the current situation as "front offices getting smarter" rather than "players being screwed by owners" (to some extent due to their own inability to choose a good MLBPA head).

You can have more efficiently runs teams and you can pay players. These things are not mutually exclusive.

It's embarrassing that the Yankees and Dodgers are leaving some holes in their teams because they don't want to spend above the threshold. The financial benefits of not paying the luxury tax are greatly overstated.
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Old 03-07-2018, 03:20 PM   #9
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The "front office types are getting smarter" folks aren't necessarily wrong - yet neither are the "the players are getting fucked" folks.

It's pretty ugly. Thankfully we're a ways off from the CBA being redone, but if this behavior continues through the rest of the agreement you can pretty much guarantee a labor stoppage in 2022.
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Old 03-08-2018, 09:33 AM   #10
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"Front offices getting smarter" is a good thing! But I would argue it is a not a sufficient condition to explain what's happening. Nobody is expecting for replicas of the Ryan Howard extension. But even teams for which a marginal win is very meaningful are not making small and smart investments in improving their teams.

On top of that, you see the two biggest spenders cutting payroll significantly. Having the Dodgers and Yankees sit out the Yu Darvish bidding - especially the Yankees given how close they and the Red Sox are projected to finish - is embarrassing. I will quote Passan on this:

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Getting out of luxury-tax jail sounds infinitely better than it is in reality – particularly for a pair of teams whose $500 million-plus in annual revenue could more than sustain payrolls past the $197 million tax threshold. Should the Yankees and Dodgers stay under it this year, their baseline tax for exceeding it in future years would reset from the current 50 percent to 20 percent.

Suppose the Dodgers splurge in 2019 and carry a $246 million payroll. If they reset this year, it would save them only $12 million in luxury-tax penalties next season. Combined with another several hundred thousand dollars taken from their amateur budgets, it’s something. Just not a lot of something.
How the Yankees and the Dodgers have managed to actually convince fans and the media that this is a good thing completely befuddles me. For the past 4/5 years, you have periodic Joel Sherman columns tracking how well the Yankees are doing in staying under the threshold. Most of these pieces take as gospel that the Yankees are going to save a lot of money. Who the fuck cares? Plus, who could tell that reducing payroll would save owners money? Talk about stupid tautologies.

The belief among part of the fanbase is that the luxury tax "resets" will allow the teams to "go crazy" in the great 2019 FA class. I guess I'll be happy to stand corrected in a year, but nothing that I have seen makes me think that going under the threshold is a one-year go.

To top it off, there is a pervasive tendency of fans to side with ownership against "overpaid" players. "Players already make a lot of money"; "owners are running a business"; etc. Which is so fucking stupid. And while I agree that the FA remuneration system is broken - together with the system of servitude in the minors and the 6/7 years of massive underpayment in the majors - does anyone see any owner interested in changing it?
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Old 03-08-2018, 07:55 PM   #11
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That's always pissed me off when fans regarded players as overpaid or greedy. If they were in the same position, they'd do the same thing. Plus, the owners are the ones who decide to overpay the players. The Yankees have been trying to get under the luxury tax for years. They've got a lot of millionaires on the team. Plus, they just traded for a dude who makes 30 mil? a season. No easy task. I wouldn't have signed Darvish. They've already got health concerns with Tanaka.
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Old 03-08-2018, 09:56 PM   #12
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So where were the other 29 teams when Moustakas was offering to sign a 1 year, $6.5m deal? You can’t tell me nobody would have beaten that.
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Old 03-09-2018, 08:50 AM   #13
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There is no sports league in America with a system as oppressive to wages and labor as Major League Baseball requiring six fucking years of service time before hitting unrestricted free agency. Some of the best players in baseball make less than a million for several years. And minor league baseball's salaries are a fucking embarrassment.

They artificially get the prime years on the cheap and now are refusing to spend once players finally get beyond the deals they sign in that six year window.
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Old 03-09-2018, 04:38 PM   #14
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There is no sports league in America with a system as oppressive to wages and labor as Major League Baseball requiring six fucking years of service time before hitting unrestricted free agency. Some of the best players in baseball make less than a million for several years. And minor league baseball's salaries are a fucking embarrassment.

They artificially get the prime years on the cheap and now are refusing to spend once players finally get beyond the deals they sign in that six year window.


A friend of mine and I were spitballing what type of plan we think might help with wages for younger players and we were thinking something like a player is a free agent every 5 years starting after the season in which they turn 25, and the only thing the bidding teams then really have power over is AAV and allowing/receiving opt-outs with payout amounts.

That might suck for the teams who have players who don’t develop quickly in the minor leagues, but it probably sucks more currently for the players who have to work a day job while playing in the minors.

I’m sure there are holes in this idea that we didn’t think of.
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Old 03-11-2018, 04:10 PM   #15
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The Phillies should have signed one of them weeks ago. I'm embarrassed that they are participating in this clear anti-labor collusion. Especially since their rotation competition in camp is "Aaron Nola and 15 AAAA starters."
The Phillies have done the thing.
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