Sunday, October 02, 2005

 

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes


I still don't know what I was waiting for
And my time was running wild
A million dead end streets and
Every time I thought I'd got it made
It seemed the taste was not so sweet...
-David Bowie

Well, it's over. Time to forget this miserable year and look forward to next season. Many changes ahead...

Changes to this blog

New to this blog as co-writer is slackfarmer, an insightful poster at the Dodgers.com forum who has apparently decided to move on from the riff-raff therein. (Didn't all Dodger bloggers evolve from their muck?) Welcome, slackfarmer! The check's in the mail, I swear!

Changes to the roster

It's way too early to start guessing the off-season maneuvers, but the focus of the overhaul will probably be in acquiring a big bat or two, and possibly a starting pitcher who will be cheaper than Weaver, as he'll probably move on to bigger dollars elsewhere. (Back to Detroit perhaps?)

Everyone will clamor for the likes of Matsui, Giles, and Burnett, but acquiring needs by trading away spare parts and/or prospects is a possibility, as that would both fill immediate needs on the ML roster and free up some much-needed room on the 40 man roster.

Was all that recent playing time for Aybar an audition for 3B next year or to bump up his trade value? Surely Phillips' value is higher than the last off-season, when he was acquired for less than nothing. What's this about Beltre being shopped around? So many possibilities...

Changes to the coaching staff

Will Tracy be back next year? Probably not, but we'll know soon enough. Is it possible that an in-house solution such as Royster or Collins has been discussed? It's not entirely outside the realm of possibilities. Will the other coaches be back? Their futures are in limbo until Tracy's situation is solved. Why do I start asking and answering my own questions the moment I mention Tracy? It must be the five years of listening to his talk that's affecting me.

To my knowledge, the coaching staff is one of the few parts of the organization that has been left relatively intact since McCourt's purchase. It may be time for an overhaul so that they are more in step with the rest of the organization instead of having "creative differences."

Other changes

I was watching the pregame show today and yet again there was a reference to the 1955 World Series champs. Terms such as "team" and "chemistry" were interspersed with images of "winning" and "championship". But which is the cause and which is the effect? Who can say, really.

The same goes to the public image of the entire organization, which is that of a team run by a cheapskate and his "Screaming Meanie" wife intent on squeezing every penny out of its fans. The players are nameless commodities whose values are determined by a spreadsheet run by a 32 year old kid with a fancy degree from Harvard.

The team's in ruins! Bring back St. Paulie LoDuca and his irreplaceable "heart-and-soul"! And on and on and on...

For me, one beauty of the game is when a crushed ball is miraculously caught by a diving fielder, or the meekest of squibs somehow falls in for a big hit. In the context of a full season, a parallel would be the production from key players and the emergence of the little-known players who earn and fill roles otherwise unoccupied. This year's team had its share of the no-names who filled in valiantly, but that was nowhere enough to make up for the lost production from the broken cornerstones.

The team image took a blow this year. And now on to next year and hopefully a return back to the glory days.

Time may change me
But I can't trace time
I said that time may change me
But I can't trace time

Comments:
I haven't been to dodgers.com, but I've heard the rumors.
 
hey steve, how about one final epilogue over at FJT when tracy's fired?
 
Thanks for the welcome and the "insightful" label. There should be plenty of interesting managerial and player moves to discuss this offseason, and hopefully a more fruitful 2006.
 
Only because you asked nicely.
 
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