Jon Heyman illustrates the distance between fact and fiction in today’s sportswriting world in this rumors column:
….Several readers took me to task for saying a couple weeks ago that Brian Sabean went 10 years without making a bad trade, and they were correct that I overstated his string of great deals. It was actually more like five or six years, which I still think is pretty good. And as several emailers pointed out, Sabean’s call to trade Joe Nathan, Francisco Liriano and Boof Bonser for A.J. Pierzynski came in 2002, the Giants’ World Series year but also quite possibly the start of their slide.
In any case, I do believe Sabean’s streak was very impressive and also don’t believe it was my overstatement that caused Giants owner Peter Magowan to retain Sabean. I spoke to Magowan, one of baseball’s best and most accountable and reasonable owners, at the All-Star Game, and Magowan said at the time that Sabean was currently laying out his plan for the future. Magowan also said then that if Magowan determined he liked Sabean’s plan, he would be retained (but if he didn’t, he’d be looking for a new GM). By now of course, we know now he must have liked Sabean’s plan, as the Giants’ GM got a two-year extension.
Magowan told me he didn’t blame Sabean for the problems that have caused the Giants, a perennial winner, to fall on hard times the past couple of seasons. “I like our GM. He’s a good man … I think we’re all guilty, in retrospect, of putting too much emphasis on older veterans,” Magowan said. “What we need to do is rely more on our farm system than we did in the past.” Magowan pointed out that the farm system did produce a decent number of major leaguers. Although, he also conceded, “most of it’s pitching.”
In fact, just about all of the big leaguers they’ve developed are pitchers. The failing of the Giants — and this really isn’t Sabean’s fault other than he’s the boss of the scouting director and scouts — is that they haven’t produced any real offensive talent in recent years. And that’s a big failing.
Umm, Jon, are you fucking kidding somebody? Doesn’t SI have fact-checkers? Nathan was traded in the off-season, after he made 78 appearances for the Giants in 2003. And the Nathan trade was but one in a series of seemingly endless miscues by Sabean and his staff. 6 years without a bad trade? Huh?
Since the Jason Schmidt trade, the Giants have not made one single impact trade. Not one. Before Schmidt, it was the Matt Williams for Jeff Kent deal. Name one other trade from the last decade that could even be remotely considered a significant deal. ONE. You can’t.
On the other hand, how about we look at the acquisitions that Sabean has made?
Accardo for Hillebrand? Ainsworth for that shitty lefty…. Damian Moss, who went from the Giants to out-of-baseball in about fifteen minutes, just like ten or fifteen other players we’ve thrown money on the ground for this last decade. Matt Herges? Sidney Ponson? Ricky Ledee? Dave Burba? LaTroy Hawkins? Alex Sanchez? Michael Tucker? Dustin Hermanson? Wayne Franklin? Jeffrey Hammond?
How about the $40 million dollars the Giants paid to Robb Nen and Kirk Reuter for not pitching? The $12 million thrown on the ground in front of Marvin Benard? The $24 million burned in a campfire for Edgardo Alfonzo? The $18 million wasted on Matheny? The $40 million for ten years of the worst production at first base in all of baseball?
NEIFI –FUCKING– PEREZ!?!?!?!?!!
Are you out of your mind?
How about this absurdity:
“…. just about all of the big leaguers they’ve developed are pitchers. The failing of the Giants — and this really isn’t Sabean’s fault other than he’s the boss of the scouting director and scouts — is that they haven’t produced any real offensive talent in recent years.”
“This isn’t really Sabean’s fault other than he’s the boss of the scouting director and scouts….”
What? Did you write that when you were high? I mean, WHAT?!
“No real offensive talent in recent years?” Bill Meuller and Pedro Feliz are the only full-time position players to have come through the Giants system in TWO DECADES!!!!
With all due respect, that is some of the laziest, shittiest sportswriting I have ever seen. Why bother at all, if you’re gonna put out that kind of utter horsehit? “I spoke to Magowan….” Really? You talked to an owner? Wow.
Wondering if it was your writing that may have swayed the owner of a baseball team to re-sign his GM?! Are you serious? Your absurd, wrong, pointless fucking ramblings might have swayed Magowan, a self-made, multi-millionaire of a baseball team owner?!
THAT IS THE WORST PIECE OF SHIT I’VE EVER SEEN IN A MAJOR PUBLICATION. I know dozens of bloggers who would be embarrassed to write something so completely fucking worthless. You should be fired.
UPDATE: One of my readers offers these corrections to MY rant:
While you don’t have a staff of fact checkers, I still expect correct facts from you too, John. Accardo wasn’t traded for just Hillenbrad, we also got Chulk. Was it a a bad deal? Sure, it was a bad deal, just not as bad a deal as your incorrect facts imply. But, this wasn’t your only mistake or even your biggest mistake. You also mistated who we trade for Moss. It wasn’t Ainsworth. An injured and never to be the same again Ainsworth was traded with Moss to Baltimore for Ponson. It was Ortiz that was traded to Atlanta for Moss and Merkin Valdez. How a Giants Fan running a Giants Blog could make this mistake is beyond me. If you had correctly stated that we lost Ortiz and Ainsworth for 4 Months of Moss, 2 Months of Ponson, and Valdez this would have actually supported your case much better. But, you didn’t. You may have a logical basis to attack Heyman’s positon, but you sure can’t claim the high ground on the correct use of facts.
Sure, I was wrong about a couple of those, I was ranting. I also wasn’t claiming the “high ground.” I was ranting and raving that Heyman not only was wrong the first time he wrote about Sabean, he was also wrong the second time, on just about every fact he chose to highlight. I am a carpenter, who runs this site, and does all my research ALONE, after my real job. I don’t have fact-checkers, or interns, or an editor. I don’t have access to players, coaches, managers, owners. I don’t have access to the Sats, Inc. database that Heyman does, either. I am on the outside looking in, and sometimes I do get it wrong. I admit the mistake. So let’s not get too carried away, Gianstrainman.