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Ash to remain with club as advisor, pro scout


1992casey

Sterns: Ash 'going to stay' with Brewers

 

As far as I can tell, no official title for Gord's position has been announced, but the job description is that of an "advisory and pro scouting capacity."

 

He's going to be a very helpful adviser from a strategic thinking standpoint. He'll also do some professional and Major League coverage for us once the regular season gets going. But Gord is going to stay.

That’s the only thing Chicago’s good for: to tell people where Wisconsin is.

[align=right]-- Sigmund Snopek[/align]

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I like that Gord Ash gets to stick around. Regarding the comment about getting fleeced by Toronto, I beg to differ.

 

Other than a couple truly inconsequential things (OF Alvin Morrow for C Kevin L. Brown; Paul Philips for cash -- and I'm guessing many don't remember who some or all of those guys even were, let alone who got who), those below are about it for Brewers/Blue Jays trades in the past 20 years. So based on your verbiage, 3and2Fastball, and other comments reflecting significant dissatisfaction with the "Melvin regime," is it fair to assume that you have a strong bias against the Marcum/Lawrie trade because we gave up a strong prospect on the cusp of the majors for a post-TJ surgery veteran SP who didn't help get the Brewers into the World Series?

 

Getting Dave Bush & Gabe Gross for Lyle Overbay (with Prince Fielder waiting in the wings) wasn't stellar for either side & sure wasn't a fleecing by Toronto.

Getting Shawn Marcum for Brett Lawrie looked good in 2011 for the Brewers, better (in terms of promise) in the next couple years for Toronto, and ultimately not great for either side in the long run.

Trading Carlos Villanueva for a PTBNL (later turned out to be cash) was a "nothing" deal because we weren't going to be keeping Villanueva -- he wasn't getting any better by that point and he wasn't cheap any longer.

Getting Yorvit Torrealba for the last 1-2 weeks of 2012 for cash was, in a way, a very-small-scale version of the Villanueva trade in reverse.

Getting Adam Lind for Marco Estrada was a win-win.

 

As best I can figure, the only deal that might be considered a fleecing is the Lawrie/Marcum trade, and that's still all in how you look at it. Lawrie had lots of promise but was wearing out the patience of the Brewers' front office with his devil-may-care, boisterous & arguably self-serving & immature ways (he was also a #1-drafted-C who told the FO he was moving to 2B). But he's also a career pedestrian .736 OPS 3B whose OBP the last two years is a robust .300. Granted, the Brewers paid Aramis Ramirez a ton more than Lawrie made in the same time frame (2012-15), but Ramirez's offense dwarfed most anything Lawrie did except for his 150 ABs in his 2011 debut, which ultimately screams "small sample size" relative to how he's performed over the rest of his career. . . . Marcum sure petered out quickly after 2012 and was lousy in the 2011 postseason, but I doubt the Brewers get nearly as close to the postseason without him in their 2011 rotation (13-7, 3.54 ERA, 200 IP w/ 158 K's & 57 BB's). It's also worth nothing that under Macha's reign in 2012, he was also 7-4 with a 3.70 ERA in 124 IP with 109 K's & 41 BB's in spite of the time he missed with injuries -- not stellar but still quite respectable, especially by 2012 standards.

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Lawrie was traded along with a low minors SS, a replacement level MLB pitcher (who is, granted, young) and Sean Nolin who has a 6.89 career ERA for four seasons of Josh freakin' Donaldson. Lord have mercy
The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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As far as Lind/Estrada, that really remains to be seen in terms of what Lind can bring the Brewers on the trade market. Marco pitched very very well for Toronto in 2015, especially in the postseason. That trade speaks more to the general ineptitude of Melvin/Ash than as much of a fleecing, as Melvin/Ash failed to get young prospects for a good solid pitcher and instead got an injury prone 1B. If Lind can be flipped I'd call that even I suppose. Lind was the #14 best 1B in 2015 according to Fangraphs WAR. He has value, hopefully Stearns can flip him
The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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Alcides Escobar

Lorenzo Cain

Wade Davis (Acquired for Jake Odorizzi)

Josh Donaldson (Acquired for Brett Lawrie & Prospects)

Carlos Gomez

Marco Estrada

Jonathan Lucroy

Jeremy Jeffress

 

Plus tons of money saved from not having to sign K-Rod or Aramis Ramirez

 

is one helluva nucleus of a team right there. And that's even with a declining Ryan Braun

 

Meanwhile Ned Yost has been a better manager than anyone Melvin/Ash hired since (I suppose it remains to be seen with Counsell, who I like)

 

Yes, hindsight is 20/20 but we can now see a lot of what could have happened instead of just grasping for the Brass Ring in 2011 and then becoming average to horrible ever since. But then that is why Doug Melvin is an ex-GM

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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A sound-byte-depth answer and a scoff. Billy Beane made a stupid trade perhaps no other GM makes, and I'm just supposed to agree with your assertion that Toronto fleeced the Brewers 5 years ago? So much for critical thinking!

 

Marcum helped the Brewers get to within 2 games of the World Series. I doubt Lawrie would've done the same for MIL anytime since, or for that matter that even Josh Donaldson would've made that much of a difference had he been on the 2015 Brewers. . . . IMO, the notion that the Marcum/Lawrie trade blatantly favors the Blue Jays is more emotionally charged myth than reality, conveniently justified by the state of the Brewers' farm system from 2011-13 -- there's little if any causality between trading on-the-verge-of-MLB-Lawrie and the Brewers' barren farm system.

 

Was Lawrie and a bunch of bodies truly worth now-repeat All-Star Josh Donaldson? Value-wise, no, but Anthopolous still got Beane to go along with that deal. . . . On the flip side, had Lawrie still been a Brewer last winter, could the Brewers have made that same trade? I highly doubt it.

 

Toronto very likely fleeced Oakland on their deal involving Lawrie. However, given what Marcum helped the 2011 Brewers do, I don't believe Toronto fleeced the Brewers in their 2011 deal at all.

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Yup almost winning 100 games and competing in the NLCS is grasping for the cup. Thanks for the good laugh.

 

Also what the heck does Ash have to do with all that? Ash's job was to do desk duty and run errands for Melvin. He negotiated and talked to who Melvin wanted to do business with.

 

Blaming Ash for something is grasping for the cup, plate, bowl, and the whole kitchen table.

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Estrada couldn't keep the ball in the park in 2014 or himself in the Brewers rotation. He turned it around in Toronto, showing plenty of why the Brewers left him in the rotation so long in 2014. Last winter he was quite likely a non-tender candidate if the Brewers couldn't make a deal for him. Toronto got him as a good arm & for staff depth, mainly in the bullpen, but needed him in the rotation after other injuries opened a spot. He became a 3.6 WAR SP on a playoff team and, in exchange, the totally crappy 2015 Brewers got a spare part from Toronto who was a 3.1 WAR 1B who played in 149 games. Win-win.

 

Doug Melvin is an ex-GM because, at age 63, he decided to step down, a move he started to feel he was ready for beginning last winter. That has nothing to do with going "all in" in 2011 and coming up 2 games short of the World Series and having a lousy farm system over the next 2 years. For the first 5 months of the 2014 season, Melvin pulled the right strings and the Brewers were 71-55 before the entire team tanked. Yet the farm system was getting much stronger and even no-fanfare young guys still came up in 2015 and contributed meaningfully -- all before Melvin announced the transition plan he conceived.

 

I liked Yost as the Brewers manager and rooted for KC again in the Series this year. Yost has become a much better manager with the Royals, but even that transformation wasn't instant or ever guaranteed. In his Brewers-managing days, once the team proved capable of having a shot at making the post-season, Yost's teams were marked by an inability to get out of late-season death-spirals, the final episode of which Melvin & Attanasio rightly believed had to be cut short lest the promise of finally making the post-season in 2008 once again go by the board due to a horrific Yost-led collapse. For all Yost did well, he showed zero ability to get his teams out of those slumps that became death spirals in the standings.

 

Wade Davis is a heck of a pitcher these days. He started off as a promising starter in TB but was inconsistent and finally was bumped into relief. He showed no real foreshadowing of his KC success in the TB bullpen. He became part of the Shields deal to boost the prospect return for TB (not unlike adding Fiers to the Gomez deal netted Phillips, though Fiers was leaps-and-bounds more successful in the bigs at the time of that trade that Davis had been prior to the Shields trade). That said, to suggest that the Brewers would've traded Odorizzi -- their only high-end SP prospect at the time -- for a fireballing middle reliever is sheer folly.

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Again:

 

Alcides Escobar

Lorenzo Cain

Wade Davis (Acquired for Jake Odorizzi)

Josh Donaldson (Acquired for Brett Lawrie & Prospects)

Carlos Gomez

Marco Estrada

Jonathan Lucroy

Jeremy Jeffress

Ryan Braun

 

is the nucleus of a sustainable great team, a team that contends year in and year out, which is exactly what Attanasio wanted and exactly what Kansas City achieved (except with Donaldson & Braun the above team might be better). Kansas City knew the value of Greinke and instead went with something greater longterm.

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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Alcides Escobar

Lorenzo Cain

Wade Davis (Acquired for Jake Odorizzi)

Josh Donaldson (Acquired for Brett Lawrie & Prospects)

Carlos Gomez

Marco Estrada

Jonathan Lucroy

Jeremy Jeffress

 

Plus tons of money saved from not having to sign K-Rod or Aramis Ramirez

 

is one helluva nucleus of a team right there. And that's even with a declining Ryan Braun

 

Meanwhile Ned Yost has been a better manager than anyone Melvin/Ash hired since (I suppose it remains to be seen with Counsell, who I like)

 

Yes, hindsight is 20/20 but we can now see a lot of what could have happened instead of just grasping for the Brass Ring in 2011 and then becoming average to horrible ever since. But then that is why Doug Melvin is an ex-GM

 

 

Ned Yost's teams have won more games. That does not make him a better manager.

 

Not to mention, even if that imaginary lineup came to fruition the starting pitching would still be horrible.

"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006
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Obviously they are going to be differing opinions on whether or not the Greinke and Marcum trades were worth it in the long run but I don't understand how anyone can criticize the Estrada trade. What team was going to give up a prospect of any value for one year of Marco Estrada? He was a human pitching machine in 2014 and Lind was an oft-injured, platoon player without a position. The fact that Lind played well and actually stayed healthy in 2015 was of great fortune to the Brewers because, barring an injury or suckitude, he's going to bring back more in a trade than Estrada ever could have.
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As far as Lind/Estrada, that really remains to be seen in terms of what Lind can bring the Brewers on the trade market. Marco pitched very very well for Toronto in 2015, especially in the postseason. That trade speaks more to the general ineptitude of Melvin/Ash than as much of a fleecing, as Melvin/Ash failed to get young prospects for a good solid pitcher and instead got an injury prone 1B. If Lind can be flipped I'd call that even I suppose. Lind was the #14 best 1B in 2015 according to Fangraphs WAR. He has value, hopefully Stearns can flip him

 

Estrada was on pace to smash the major league record for HR allowed before they finally took him out of the rotation in 2014. Now you can say they sold low on him but he wasn't going to get much of a return off his 2014 season. He wasn't a "good solid pitcher". He was a fringe 4-5 starter at best and just a bullpen arm at worst.

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The only reason we got ANYTHING for Estrada is because Toronto had exactly what we wanted and they had no use for that asset(Lind). Toronto took a flyer that Estrada would return back to career norms as a one year commitment. If not for that specific deal I am quite confident Estrada would have been none tendered or traded for filler.

 

Deal worked out for both teams. None one got screwed in that deal.

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Or maybe Marco Estrada's true value was equal to two seasons of one of the better left-handed power hitters in the game? Maybe the Brewers pitching instruction was not exactly topnotch in recent years?

 

I can choose to wear "Brewer Goggles" and say that Estrada was nothing special. Or I can choose to look at the reality of what has happened in Estrada's career, including his 2015 season & postseason and see that he is, indeed, a "good solid pitcher".

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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Or maybe Marco Estrada's true value was equal to two seasons of one of the better left-handed power hitters in the game? Maybe the Brewers pitching instruction was not exactly topnotch in recent years?

 

I can choose to wear "Brewer Goggles" and say that Estrada was nothing special. Or I can choose to look at the reality of what has happened in Estrada's career, including his 2015 season & postseason and see that he is, indeed, a "good solid pitcher".

 

If you choose to look at his entire career it looks like Dave Bush or Jeff Suppan.

There needs to be a King Thames version of the bible.
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Or maybe Marco Estrada's true value was equal to two seasons of one of the better left-handed power hitters in the game? Maybe the Brewers pitching instruction was not exactly topnotch in recent years?

 

I can choose to wear "Brewer Goggles" and say that Estrada was nothing special. Or I can choose to look at the reality of what has happened in Estrada's career, including his 2015 season & postseason and see that he is, indeed, a "good solid pitcher".

 

You can go back and look at my posting history to see that I'm as big an Estrada fan as there is. Having said that, he is not the pitcher he was last year. As "unlucky" as he was in 2014, he was even more so "lucky" in 2015. It had nothing to do with coaching. He'll probably get a largeish $12-15MM a year, 3-4 year contract this winter and be the bane of his new team's fanbase until that contract is over.

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Or maybe Marco Estrada's true value was equal to two seasons of one of the better left-handed power hitters in the game? Maybe the Brewers pitching instruction was not exactly topnotch in recent years?

 

I can choose to wear "Brewer Goggles" and say that Estrada was nothing special. Or I can choose to look at the reality of what has happened in Estrada's career, including his 2015 season & postseason and see that he is, indeed, a "good solid pitcher".

 

If you choose to look at his entire career it looks like Dave Bush or Jeff Suppan.

 

Looking at the numbers Estrada is clearly better than Bush (WHIP, H9, etc). It does look like Estrada got a bit lucky this last year with a lower K9, but a 3.1 era vs 4.4 FIP. Both teams got pretty much the best they could have hoped for from the players they got. It was a fair trade, but given what happened prospects would have been more useful to the Brewers. Since Lind raised his value, hopefully they can get a good prospect for him. 800 ops first basemen who play decent defense don't grow on trees (or else the Brewers have been in the wrong forest far too often).

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Again:

 

Alcides Escobar

Lorenzo Cain

Wade Davis (Acquired for Jake Odorizzi)

Josh Donaldson (Acquired for Brett Lawrie & Prospects)

Carlos Gomez

Marco Estrada

Jonathan Lucroy

Jeremy Jeffress

Ryan Braun

 

is the nucleus of a sustainable great team, a team that contends year in and year out, which is exactly what Attanasio wanted and exactly what Kansas City achieved (except with Donaldson & Braun the above team might be better). Kansas City knew the value of Greinke and instead went with something greater longterm.

 

Escobar--below average shortstop that only Yost would bat leadoff with his .293 OBP (and luck into him having the greatest two weeks of his life during the post season)

Cain--never would have done anything in Milwaukee. As a 27 year old he has a wRC+ of 80. He never would have gotten playing time over Gonzalez Braun or Davis.

Davis--if the Brewers would have traded two more than solid prospects for a reliever this board would have melted down.

Donaldson--weird trade that made no sense for Oakland at the time.

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Escobar--below average shortstop that only Yost would bat leadoff with his .293 OBP (and luck into him having the greatest two weeks of his life during the post season)

Cain--never would have done anything in Milwaukee. As a 27 year old he has a wRC+ of 80. He never would have gotten playing time over Gonzalez Braun or Davis.

Davis--if the Brewers would have traded two more than solid prospects for a reliever this board would have melted down.

.

 

 

That kind of thinking is exactly why the Brewers have had 1 World Series appearance in the last 33 seasons, and the Royals are World Champs.

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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Escobar--below average shortstop that only Yost would bat leadoff with his .293 OBP (and luck into him having the greatest two weeks of his life during the post season)

Cain--never would have done anything in Milwaukee. As a 27 year old he has a wRC+ of 80. He never would have gotten playing time over Gonzalez Braun or Davis.

Davis--if the Brewers would have traded two more than solid prospects for a reliever this board would have melted down.

.

 

 

That kind of thinking is exactly why the Brewers have had 1 World Series appearance in the last 33 seasons, and the Royals are World Champs.

This might have something to do with it too:

http://www.baseballamerica.com/minors/2011-organization-talent-rankings-11472/

http://www.baseballamerica.com/minors/2012-organization-talent-rankings-13155/

 

Your "nucleus of a sustainable great team" seems to lack starting pitching. Unless you advocate trading future assets for it, to supplement your nucleus which sounds familiar for some reason.

 

What of that thinking do you disagree with? That the Brewers should trade good prospects for relievers? Cain's a great player, but with Morgan, Gomez, Braun, Hart, Aoki his opportunities in Milwaukee would have been limited.

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Your "nucleus of a sustainable great team" seems to lack starting pitching. Unless you advocate trading future assets for it, to supplement your nucleus which sounds familiar for some reason.

 

Yes they would have had to acquire more pitching, similar to the Royals, in order to make it work. Evidently Odorizzi plus an Outfield talent (Gomez maybe) equaled Shields & Wade Davis. They certainly would have enough money from not having to pay Aramis Ramirez and K-Rod that they could have signed a better pitcher than Garza.

 

I don't have all the answers, and I recognize that hindsight is 20/20. I do know that if you look at the Brewers & Royals franchises in the moments prior to the Greinke trade, one team really got things right since then and one team, over & over again, really didn't.

 

And, in terms of this thread, I see Gord Ash as a significant part of the Brewers front office that handled their window with incredible ineptitude (Betancourt? Really?!)

 

Cain's a great player, but with Morgan, Gomez, Braun, Hart, Aoki his opportunities in Milwaukee would have been limited.

 

Cain is a much much better player than all of them right now and in the 2015 season (and only someone wearing "Brewers Goggles" will say Braun is better than Cain when you factor in defense, baserunning & durability). And Cain has been a a much better player than all of them over time except Braun. I mean, c'mon now really? Aoki? Hart? Morgan? Those guys are garbage compared to Cain. The Brewers failure to recognize that kind of thing doomed them. The Brewers' failure to emphasize defense over the last bunch of years has also doomed them. I will, however, be reasonably assured that the Brewers knew how talented Cain & Escobar were and just were so single-mindedly focused on getting Greinke that they gave up the future for the 2+ years of Greinke (the "+" being Segura, Hellweg etc)

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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