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  • Rest vs. Reps?

    A lot of the concerns about the Sox performance and roster moves over the past couple weeks can really be boiled down to the fact that the Sox are not trying as hard as they can to win these games. They're resting key players, putting guys on the IL for seemingly minor issues, and giving bench guys at bats to keep them fresh. The strategy would certainly be much different if they were in a race for the division, but with a 10 game lead they're obviously prioritizing health for the playoffs.

    Nik Gaur from Sox on 35th took a look at whether this is the right decision, but while he makes some important points (like the discussion regarding "information asymmetry"), he basically comes down on the side of "we don't know" if it's the right move, and we likely will never know even in hindsight.

    https://www.soxon35th.com/rest-or-re...mber-strategy/

    I see both sides to the argument, but this is a case where I trust La Russa to make this decision. Especially since the "old school" line of thinking would be to play your stars all the way through to build that "winning mentality" or whatever you want to call it, it's encouraging to me that TLR is taking the opposite approach. He's got the decades of experience to know what it takes to win, and he knows his players (at this point) better than any of us do, so I'm going to trust him that rest is the most important thing to make sure these guys are ready for the postseason.

    La Russa also knows (first hand) that it's not the best team that wins the World Series - it's the team that plays the best in the postseason. All a team needs to do is get hot at the right time. Part of the ability to do that is being healthy, and another part is just catching a hot streak at the right time. I expect with a week or two to go in the regular season, the Sox will try to "step on the gas" a little bit to get some momentum building. Until then I'm good with the approach that these games are not essential, and it's more important to have TA, Lynn, Giolito, Rodon, etc. healthy in October than winning some (relatively) meaningless games in September.

  • #2
    Originally posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post
    A lot of the concerns about the Sox performance and roster moves over the past couple weeks can really be boiled down to the fact that the Sox are not trying as hard as they can to win these games. They're resting key players, putting guys on the IL for seemingly minor issues, and giving bench guys at bats to keep them fresh. The strategy would certainly be much different if they were in a race for the division, but with a 10 game lead they're obviously prioritizing health for the playoffs.

    Nik Gaur from Sox on 35th took a look at whether this is the right decision, but while he makes some important points (like the discussion regarding "information asymmetry"), he basically comes down on the side of "we don't know" if it's the right move, and we likely will never know even in hindsight.

    https://www.soxon35th.com/rest-or-re...mber-strategy/

    I see both sides to the argument, but this is a case where I trust La Russa to make this decision. Especially since the "old school" line of thinking would be to play your stars all the way through to build that "winning mentality" or whatever you want to call it, it's encouraging to me that TLR is taking the opposite approach. He's got the decades of experience to know what it takes to win, and he knows his players (at this point) better than any of us do, so I'm going to trust him that rest is the most important thing to make sure these guys are ready for the postseason.

    La Russa also knows (first hand) that it's not the best team that wins the World Series - it's the team that plays the best in the postseason. All a team needs to do is get hot at the right time. Part of the ability to do that is being healthy, and another part is just catching a hot streak at the right time. I expect with a week or two to go in the regular season, the Sox will try to "step on the gas" a little bit to get some momentum building. Until then I'm good with the approach that these games are not essential, and it's more important to have TA, Lynn, Giolito, Rodon, etc. healthy in October than winning some (relatively) meaningless games in September.
    For fans, this is generally true of any management decision, since we fans can only speculate while management has the relevant information available to them.

    (Formerly asindc.)

    "I have the ultimate respect for White Sox fans. They were as miserable as the Cubs and Red Sox fans ever were but always had the good decency to keep it to themselves. And when they finally won the World Series, they celebrated without annoying every other fan in the country." Jim Caple, ESPN (January 12, 2011)

    "We have now sunk to a depth at which the restatement of the (bleeding) obvious is the first duty of intelligent men." — George Orwell

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    • #3
      Originally posted by JazzyCyclist View Post

      For fans, this is generally true of any management decision, since we fans can only speculate while management has the relevant information available to them.
      It's not just the lack of information. It's that we never get to observe the counterfactual universe where the alternate decision was made, to know if it would have worked out any differently.

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      • #4
        I simply don't believe teams can "turn it on" whenever they want like a light switch...not against Major League competition. Maybe in high school or college but not in the big leagues.

        2020 showed that to a certain extent when even Jose admitted publicly, that after the Sox clinched a playoff spot, they relaxed.

        And that cost them dearly because they weren't able to recapture what gave them an edge in the first place.

        We'll see what happens.

        But the story was very interesting.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Lipman 1 View Post
          I simply don't believe teams can "turn it on" whenever they want like a light switch...not against Major League competition. Maybe in high school or college but not in the big leagues.

          2020 showed that to a certain extent when even Jose admitted publicly, that after the Sox clinched a playoff spot, they relaxed.

          And that cost them dearly because they weren't able to recapture what gave them an edge in the first place.


          We'll see what happens.

          But the story was very interesting.
          What does relax mean here, exactly? What edge did they have that they lost after they decided to relax? If they relaxed last year after clinching isn't that more of an indictment on the manager last year for allowing that to happen rather than the players? Do you think that is what is happening this year, that players are relaxing? I don't believe that, not with the manager they currently have.

          They lost the series last year because they had a poor plan for Game 3 of that series. I don't buy the relax argument, but that's just my opinion.

          Comment


          • #6
            I just don't see evidence that the White Sox are resting guys just to rest them-
            1. Vaughn- 1st 162 game season of his life combined with his first time ever playing the outfield- seems like he needs the rest to be fresh in late September/October
            2. Anderson- on the IL for lingering leg issues, similar to last year
            3. Hernandez- has had a day of rest here and there- but I think that's more connected to trying to help him out of a lingering slump than anything else
            4. Grandal- 32 yo catcher, 10 games out of a pretty significant knee injury
            5. Giolito- hamstring injury
            6. Lynn- knee injury
            7. Rodon- shoulder injury
            None of this looks to me like we're sitting/resting healthy players just for the sake of rest and coasting to the division title- we don't have any more organizational depth to tap into if these guys go down and force us to have Zavala/Collins catching, or Lopez/Keuchel starting, or Leury at SS/2nd in October. Ideally we have everyone back for 7-10 games before the season ends.
            #1 White Sox fan in Leland, MI

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Kobo View Post

              What does relax mean here, exactly? What edge did they have that they lost after they decided to relax? If they relaxed last year after clinching isn't that more of an indictment on the manager last year for allowing that to happen rather than the players? Do you think that is what is happening this year, that players are relaxing? I don't believe that, not with the manager they currently have.

              They lost the series last year because they had a poor plan for Game 3 of that series. I don't buy the relax argument, but that's just my opinion.
              And they lost Eloy- if Eloy is healthy, they probably win that series.
              #1 White Sox fan in Leland, MI

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              • #8
                Originally posted by StanBahnsen72 View Post

                And they lost Eloy- if Eloy is healthy, they probably win that series.
                I don't think that last year's team was anywhere as good as this year's team, especially pitching wise. This year they are legit contenders and Reinny hired his buddy because of his play-off experience. Now, this is on LaRussa to steer the ship and he is making all of the moves according to his "plan". He believes that resting these guys is the way to go. I think that he carries this too far but that is just my opinion. If this works and they go far in the play-offs, all hail Tony. But if they fail, then its Tony that the buck stops with. No excuses.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bird Of Prey View Post

                  I don't think that last year's team was anywhere as good as this year's team, especially pitching wise. This year they are legit contenders and Reinny hired his buddy because of his play-off experience. Now, this is on LaRussa to steer the ship and he is making all of the moves according to his "plan". He believes that resting these guys is the way to go. I think that he carries this too far but that is just my opinion. If this works and they go far in the play-offs, all hail Tony. But if they fail, then its Tony that the buck stops with. No excuses.
                  Which if these do you think is going too far?
                  1. Vaughn- 1st 162 game season of his life combined with his first time ever playing the outfield- seems like he needs the rest to be fresh in late September/October
                  2. Anderson- on the IL for lingering leg issues, similar to last year
                  3. Hernandez- has had a day of rest here and there- but I think that's more connected to trying to help him out of a lingering slump than anything else
                  4. Grandal- 32 yo catcher, 10 games out of a pretty significant knee injury
                  5. Giolito- hamstring injury
                  6. Lynn- knee injury
                  7. Rodon- shoulder injury
                  #1 White Sox fan in Leland, MI

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Kobo

                    Turn what around?? 6-4 in their last 10 games, 21 games over .500. The pants pissing that is going on around here is ridiculous.
                    This team has not played well as a group since the all-star break, bottom line. You can sugar coat things all that you want to but 6-4 doesn't get it for me against the teams that they played against. They've loaded up and beat bad pitchers in the games that they've won but when they've played against good teams with good pitching, they've gotten beat. Lynn should have something like 15 wins right now and have locked up the Cy Young award. And don't think that Lynn isn't pissed off about that inside.

                    They went 7-7 against the teams that they could face off with. Big deal. I think that they are in a lull right now and need a spark. Without Anderson playing, this is a different team.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Kobo

                      Turn what around?? 6-4 in their last 10 games, 21 games over .500. The pants pissing that is going on around here is ridiculous.
                      Yep- over the past 10 games, the White Sox 6-4 record is tied for 3rd best (with Seattle) in the American League, the NYY just lost a series at home to the Orioles (a team 18.5 games worse than KC), they are now 3-7 over their last 10, Red Sox are 5-5, as is Houston, the White Sox were 7-3 in their last 10 before losing on Sunday- while their starting SS, RF, and a few starting pitchers were all on the IL.
                      #1 White Sox fan in Leland, MI

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                      • #12
                        If someone could point out some specific examples of Sox players not giving maximum effort since the All-Star break, then maybe we could send a list for Tony to use as justification to flip over the post-game buffet (as some seem to be advocating). I can't remember any, but I'm old and I'm out of Prevagen.

                        2021 Sox Attendance Tracker: 13-6
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                        Posts on old WSI: 7344

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Chez View Post
                          If someone could point out some specific examples of Sox players not giving maximum effort since the All-Star break, then maybe we could send a list for Tony to use as justification to flip over the post-game buffet (as some seem to be advocating). I can't remember any, but I'm old and I'm out of Prevagen.
                          Do you think that this team has played well since the all-star break? Answer that. As for flipping over the post-game buffet table, all I can say is that while you posit that exaggeration of what people like me are saying, let me ask you if you think that other teams they are going to face in the play-offs haven't had a harder way to get to the play-offs and still are and have more of an EDGE than the White Sox currently have?

                          Hell, even KC outplayed the White Sox since the all-star break. So have the Mariners for cripes sake. Think that those teams felt sorry for themselves for having their teams filleted at the trading deadline. YOu could feel the pleasure that KC felt at beating the White Sox in the last series. That is what I am talking about. Yet I am listening to people making excuses for the White Sox losing because of "fatigue" on a 23 year old player. YOu think that Vaughn feels fatigue? That's funny. Do you think that Anderson is happy to be sitting out 10 days? Hilarious. Think Abreu likes to lose any game? Nope.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Kobo View Post

                            What does relax mean here, exactly? What edge did they have that they lost after they decided to relax? If they relaxed last year after clinching isn't that more of an indictment on the manager last year for allowing that to happen rather than the players? Do you think that is what is happening this year, that players are relaxing? I don't believe that, not with the manager they currently have.

                            They lost the series last year because they had a poor plan for Game 3 of that series. I don't buy the relax argument, but that's just my opinion.
                            You'll have to take it up then with Jose because that's what he said. That's not my opinion, those are his comments and he should know. He mentioned nothing about the pitching situation in his remarks (although common sense shows that was certainly a big factor) but I was referring with his comments more about the slump the last 10 days that saw the Sox urinate away the #1 seed, fall to the seven seed and have to play that playoff series on the road after they clinched a spot.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bird Of Prey View Post

                              Do you think that this team has played well since the all-star break? Answer that. As for flipping over the post-game buffet table, all I can say is that while you posit that exaggeration of what people like me are saying, let me ask you if you think that other teams they are going to face in the play-offs haven't had a harder way to get to the play-offs and still are and have more of an EDGE than the White Sox currently have?

                              Hell, even KC outplayed the White Sox since the all-star break. So have the Mariners for cripes sake. Think that those teams felt sorry for themselves for having their teams filleted at the trading deadline. YOu could feel the pleasure that KC felt at beating the White Sox in the last series. That is what I am talking about. Yet I am listening to people making excuses for the White Sox losing because of "fatigue" on a 23 year old player. YOu think that Vaughn feels fatigue? That's funny. Do you think that Anderson is happy to be sitting out 10 days? Hilarious. Think Abreu likes to lose any game? Nope.
                              Two games over since the All-Star break. 1-5-1 in road series since the All-Star break.

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