WEEI>On Demand>>Minor Details Ep. 4: Josh Byrnes and Butch Hobson on evaluating prospects

Minor Details Ep. 4: Josh Byrnes and Butch Hobson on evaluating prospects

Dec 3, 2010|

One can make the case that few things are as important to an organization as an ability to properly evaluate one's own prospects. Overvaluing prospects might lead to missed trade opportunities. Undervaluing a prospect led to the Sox' trade of Jeff Bagwell for Larry Andersen in 1990. Joining this week's episode of Minor Details are former Diamondbacks GM/Sox Assistant GM Josh Byrnes and former Sox player and manager Butch Hobson, who was Jeff Bagwell's manager in New Britain in 1990.

You Might Like

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Welcome back to another edition of minor details taking a look at the issues facing the Red Sox minor league system. This week we examine the issue of how much prospects are valued -- more two point whether or not there overvalued or undervalued. To my mind -- -- the biggest concerns facing teams is making sure that they are able to accurately evaluate. What kind of talents they have in their own farm system that's what's essential for them to figure out. What kind of players they have we're able to address needs at the Major League level and then they're also able to figure out which players their positions that trade. That won't come back to haunt them in the future you hear the idea quite frequently. That certain teams over value or certainly you hear about teams over hyping their own prospects. And -- -- accusation leveled against teams like the Red Sox in the Yankees quite a bit there is this question how valuable. Are these prospects and you know how often are you being sold a bill of goods. When you're hearing about a guy with. You know with aspiring enormous power or some kind of you know a future starter future number three in fact turns out to be no better than. Then a future middle reliever or something along those lines. In so the question becomes how does an organization. Figure out what value. What value to ascribe to its prospects. And what kind of value should have placed on his prospects versus perhaps. You know a superstar who they might people be able to acquire and trade something they were going to hear about when the likes of Adrian Gonzales. And and Justin Upton. At the winter meetings and over the course of this coming off season. When it illustrated example as they've done is that I remember talking to. To a yankees official about about a former minor leaguer that they had. I'm Eric Duncan he was a guy who had a who had tremendous power numbers in double A at a very young age should be directing 20/20 one years old. -- -- earlier in the decade in the and he never really materialized in to anything this was someone whose prodigious power early. Never materialized into an actual functional Major League career and in talking to the Yankees official about about different process. -- took power through this system maybe the Yankees officials have. Yet don't it was the guy who we absolutely should have traded we missed the chance to do so so that's one danger that the team faces. But of course you have the opposite possibility. Which is that you have a prospectors undervalued and and the consequences can certainly be devastating it's actually a fairly timely topic for Red Sox fans. Because this week. The Hall of Fame ballot for -- 2011. Was announced and audit for the first time is included a former Red Sox prospect Jeff Bagwell who of course infamous -- was treated. From the Red Sox to the masters in exchange for middle reliever Larry Anderson in 1990 in so the question is at that time. You know obviously the Red Sox undervalued Bagwell you don't treat a future hall of beamer her middle reliever but. How did that happen why did that happen. And what are the consequences of of -- under valuation. Happenings so so we had two great guests this week in order to explore the topic. The first was former Arizona Diamondbacks general manager and former Red Sox assistant general manager. Josh Byrnes. Josh has also been has also worked in the front office is at the Cleveland Indians. The Colorado Rockies. NT has. And he had a number of interesting experiences. On all sides of blockbusters for instance. He was very much involved in in brokering the deal that landed Curt Schilling with the Red Sox when he was the Diamondbacks general manager he had on here at a blockbuster he orchestra is a blockbuster deal. To -- Dan -- but at the cost of a couple of young stars. In night in Carlos Gonzalez immigrant Anderson. So it just talked about -- talked about how. Organizations go about valuing prospects in you know in what. And how to approach that question of whether or not prospects are. -- properly valued versus overvalued versus undervalued from and organizational standpoint this interview that we have is with butch hobson. Which was a former -- it was a former Red Sox start third baseman and he actually. It's actually an interest in recent years. -- Adrian the great seasons produced by Adrian Beltre in my cool in recent years have invariably. Drawn have invariably resulted mentions but Thompson's name because. He produced some power numbers at third base in the seventies for the Red Sox. That haven't been seen since then until Beltre -- started joining his company but it. -- in addition to being a former Red Sox player was of course also a Red Sox manager but he was also a Red Sox minor league manager. But in 1990 intact he was the Red Sox double a manager. In New Britain, Connecticut. Where Jeff Bagwell was was tearing up the Eastern League he wasn't producing power -- that -- but. He was a formidable prospect parliament has evaluated by baseball America and so I talked with butch about about how the Red Sox evaluated Jeff Bagwell at the time that he was traded to the Astros. It kind of what went wrong in in that field so. Obviously we're going to start with Josh -- today talking about how front office is cool about the process of. Ensuring that their as accurate as possible in evaluating their own. Prospects. What additional reminder as ever please do feel free to send me feedback on what you think the podcast what was good in those terrible. Had done at peace beer at W eEye dot com or send me a note on Twitter at at Alex beer. Here is the interview with Josh -- Josh -- former Arizona Diamondbacks general manager as well as former Red Sox assistant general manager has generously offered to join us this become minor details Josh thanks so much for joining. I just wanted to talk about how prospects are valued for purposes of trades so to start with. -- we hear quite a bit about the idea that a team. Tends to over hyper over value its prospects all the time and especially with the Red Sox and yankees you hear that a lot perhaps just because they're in huge markets and get a lot of -- a lot of parents -- a lot of -- and is there truth to the idea that teens tend overvalued their own prospects. I think -- I think it's probably more -- than ever get maybe get you back to the Dodgers. I would -- player director Albuquerque narrow. Tapestry historical they'll go to our market is beard come through I think now. Across thirty can't wish you know the value of young players as does very well understood that joke that change or carbon capture other image by over. Really irrelevant and they'll sometimes. Bought them -- trade dynamic because. You know we are about the prospects -- the prospect the support that just about but history tells us. Help how important -- part of building a successful organization is it to be able to accurately evaluate your own prospects. It's very important -- it was a big trade at ought to the big ingredients of the Braves tried. Yeah for a decade -- apathetic. Itself -- -- in their own ballot. You know go to whatever. Dealt -- creators -- at Centralia and then there's there's clearly stated trade generally. Didn't come back to bite them. So you you said that does it industrywide and people are -- more and more on the side of of of valuing their -- their prospects more and more highly. Is that just a construct of is that our results of of the cost of free agency at this point or that is there more to its its underlying. You know the the decision to err on the side of valuing your prospects are because it seems to me that you know a couple of decades ago. I teams would say you know prospects are disposable their -- their. You noted that the goal is always to help the Major League team and there was less of a long term view of their -- of their value. Yes I think it helped negotiate the skirt every people every bad trader makes it extra little are forever cracked down arrow has done the job just made. -- traitor -- players who could do big things elsewhere I have actually you know him -- whereas you know. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- You know Texas until Rogers earlier trips are pretty good prospects auto it true that. Part of that the cost of doing -- special part of -- you know like -- They have makes sense particularly its particular budget does is they don't have the latest spend it creating jailing or trading for guys. I generally -- If you're willing to step popular private and you know shorter commitment or one of the biggest fears -- -- images -- generally on employers that are very strong field and then you know we all the other. Others build that well. So is it sink in based on the fact that teams are erring on the side of valuing -- prospects highly. And they're young talent is there is there a market inefficiency to exploit for a team that's willing to be aggressive in trying to pursue. Those types of guys in one and -- against. It seems worth asking you especially because. The Diamondbacks were incredibly active in the trade market during your time is GM and you know it seemed like that was the that was the preferred to team building in -- and if I'm not mistaken. I -- there can't vehicle market efficiency I think -- always is more important several Toronto strip for a directional other. Drafting college players Serb. Defense that church or whatever you know although the prevailing view is that. We did make a lot of trade -- probably. They only have. A couple of three players that we probably regrets. And sometimes you know you're going or credit card electorate that. There -- market leader instead of creating you literally for true Austria Italy on the dollar -- we call extra the national less starting pitching was KG weight divisions so it blew it almost. Always devote our resources are trade -- is true start pitching well -- you know their hair -- Hernandez to -- -- restaurant -- -- -- You know -- could be put pitcher like -- you know -- get things that are. I'm in another and in other industries. There would surely be you know it's a phenomena and of outside consultants. To scrutinize how an organization was evaluating. Its own process these especially with regards to its own prospects and players. You know you if you didn't you hear someone who's been giving advice. Since since her time with Arizona. Over the past summer -- two other organizations but is there anything along the lines. Of a kind of consulting. Phenomena and in Major League Baseball they've done that examines how well a team does in terms of evaluating its own players or is it just obvious based on the end results. Well it's pitch that trying to trick yeah advocate question I think in other teams are generally hold other prospects are always have. And then issue a lot of others. Can't destroy at times sort of prospect -- doesn't pan out -- out of optional yet established yourself and go back and say 03 years -- kind of they're great trade without players so. You know sort of -- because critics say it I think that your the sort of little games that. They are very aggressive trading prospects. You know probably gonna have a few that show up and do well elsewhere in -- had never trade their prospects. Probably disposal to deal. Because they were there are more conservative. And their view that -- -- nurture that talent. In your own case I went through with the Diamondbacks can you describe or even if you -- if you wanna talk about it died in a broader opinion your brother career whether you know your time with the Indians -- the Rockies -- the Red Sox. But can you describe one trait of each variety that you -- you've been involved in. Well probably hit that the other most noteworthy or or auto and this was. You know that Eritrea have you bench coach we have worked especially where it was a -- PLC some. You know let's realize you know we're credible evidence that just kind -- it's got Cy Young first -- second consecutive years and it shall we garlic. Adding another trying to urge patience starter. With a young crucial player groups. -- reduced chance you know either out of lower -- payroll survey in this success for a few years so. We did have some abstraction Deb. We -- really pursuing a that you're on has had a harder for darted. They're just jokes got you -- they're they're controlled too short so. We did that most grudge trait we've mail obviously couple of those guys had their referential turnout true. Impact you're actually seeing quite a bit and then. If there was terrific. There's we extracted battle that we have. Have a page or 72829. -- sign that we -- -- extend and then we did so. You know this would have been administrators should resign until extension and obviously yeah. Has been traded to the angels but. You know it -- things that had ecstatic -- Biology instructor over officiating October it and that was probably are most aggressive posture based starting pitcher much you know there doesn't think it is very -- -- -- starters there's. Was there a deal they've done that you didn't make did you feel especially proud of. Yeah me I think what -- especially if market like this decision a good sense of spinal lows are good server accurately we've we've tried it George scouts so. Pick it up better burn virtually job scenario a lot Hernandez or walkers those tragic that'll that'll hopefully have value of you know it was it's important understand their chance to bounce back in. Still sticking with guys have they're Christian obviously had a bit difficult to go to Nigeria a couple teams did check can. -- -- -- -- You know my big break to give up bottom -- you know historically couldn't get -- austerity budget doesn't and so you know. -- say in general you know because I rocket Richard prospects social of the youngest -- Italy actually -- ray players. And now a lot of money so that we just had to decide it's in Turkey that I could be used to require other players obviously. -- you're right sometimes or. Getting back to us today haren trade for a moment. I guess you know the the big question is. You know you -- given that you both teams got exactly what they were seeking you know the Diamondbacks got a a superstar pitcher really one of the finest. Pitchers in the majors as you point out the a's got exactly what they were seeking even though they didn't end up. Keeping Carlos Gonzales but in Brett Anderson and Carlos Gonzales they got a pair future all stars. But they were you know they were guys who didn't really make their Majorly impact until subsequent seasons -- do you make that deal again and you know is is that. You know is the superstar and hand worth a couple of all stars down the road. If I had bigger question. They don't want change it comes and we all. You know this special envoy has not -- Boston New York. Market that they're probably cannon that should be very competitive state every year. -- they're they're market -- off. -- pictures I think yeah that that particular time. Just try to build a team that got alert Serb Kyra we've -- had -- to chance to be a multiple playoff came period of years. Good or bad address. And they ironically I think. Archer doesn't make changes to terms towels that are allergic doesn't seventeenth. And -- -- and put a mistake or both. Their top five -- a site I actually did that what they're supposed to do it and they don't we just didn't stated -- didn't -- so much it would actually writes there's a -- what they're trying to put launchers and totally opposed to watered. And -- to override it but -- you know we can assure fashion chicken place they hear what the first you're a parent and obviously. Inaudible source -- Gibril I've got hurt and at all what's wrong. What. Thumb that I mean it's really interesting case study the haren trade because. You don't find many instances of a young very controllable. You know star -- star caliber player. Who's dealt you know even when he has several years remaining on his deal. -- it's interesting especially in light of this coming off season. Given that -- given that there is. You know a it's an extraordinary talents such as Justin Upton. Whose availability has been much discussed who's on who's you know perform did not star caliber in the past. He is very young and he is controllable for a number of years. Do you think that there heron trade would be kind of a model for for an Upton type trade. Maybe it just it is here -- distraught here and here you're touching on it very. As much as the players' talent there's just this this year deterring factor that a judge did you almost say it enough that. You know the ears to control and the cost. Are purge huge tractors -- what you're getting ordered your. So Ellis stopped it. You know I think we all know it is a good player now has -- to -- star level player. And -- five years of contract about 49 million dollars so. He Richard. -- are you might have gotten sort of impact performance -- without having paid total operating cost in my -- dollars do other things so. Did you have -- perpetrated it quickly put in a context of how competitive -- -- do it. Yeah the money -- -- spent or reopen the case I didn't. This one roof. Also is believed to the next seven that's just just -- -- and so -- -- -- You know I think again the taking out just. Didn't get my health care what you -- malveaux -- right up the chain that should stop building for something. If if we can digress for a moment how how big talent is up -- and I mean obviously. You committed to motivate you were when we signed him to that to that six year deal which you know it seems like just about any team baseball would would sign him to that but. You know how significant is his is his ceiling you know what is. What is that to a package there. It's clear he had a pretty you know. -- probably has to -- to correct quarters this strike does jurors does. As I ordered to stand children are should get five games that a few. Minor injuries but. You know it's should try to emulated. A lot of young players and latest -- faced a lot of -- secure cannibal. -- really -- You know peavy. They only chose those types of guys and it. You know that's that's the kind of pitching they've faced a lot of them and it's been -- regulator and a division of power for some guys and -- So you know better to be elite players get a cut down on the strikeouts. She are you as a senator go to. And certainly didn't -- order it for average. Draw should propel our ethics something that's -- it worked very hard on. It they had gotten very here. Stand played -- original buyers. Editor based truck and based dealer so -- -- put us together you can analyze things and I also. Possibly could play center fielder -- two we didn't need to do a good bit Christian some you're either very good talent and so long time. Baseball people compare -- big it was a ministry -- such bigotry or just do it. Option to a possible. Getting back to the issue of value -- processing is how often do you see eye to eye with other organizations. In terms of how you value your prospects for is how they value your prospects I guess that's kind of a question of our trades easier hard to make. -- -- -- -- excess body at a much. Yes -- other show much I was -- destroy -- people at work -- there really well. We were -- an -- deal. There was a bit like trying. Whether you know Boston or Cleveland or Texas show. Yeah I just thought -- assault players saying -- -- valued in the same player and possibly some sort -- it's so hard to make trade demand actually. If if you like play okay or that I do there probably starts to create a deal where you know Italian more than we did so. I think it's that difference are dependent. Population they expose such an ordeal they want but -- -- -- too much can't make a deal. Who wins the what was the treaty came closest to making with the Red Sox for instance. I'd rather not disclose it and it's sort of supported and then you know I think both sides. But players did you just been. You know -- they're going to be there -- years and then import -- also sort of -- -- You know didn't argue about side of I think both sort of traffic but it didn't do that deal. And getting back to two -- time with the Red Sox how different was the landscape for trades then first is now in terms of how prospects are valued in the industry if at all. Well I think it's still very important thing -- -- thank you just was smart. You know -- -- would to have. People evaluate your system that that don't. Especially I would have. But biased towards the master analogue and drafting or signing of those players so it might go under. -- -- been -- came in at first there's an area that's the first good and bad influence does much but I drafting him stroke. Delta bitch bitch. No place like Benton and and especially here and we you know getting here. You know it might have had 1015 people were untrue or value there are sort you know -- player. There -- higher double play at the counter here they're gonna open which has I want you kind of care Portugal different people so. -- the consulate Breck -- prospects so. So our trust. And you know you're not with -- again and it should not perfect but I think. I think most cherished and a lot of time valuing our. How how much time is spent in -- entering the winter meetings in terms of kind of creating that list you know ranking your own prospects. -- is it done as a you know as a one through you know one through 100 exercise. Where is it done as a you know as a kind of depth chart you know these are the guys we have a disposition. This is the position where we have expendable pieces because of the depth it's been accumulated there. Versus you know there's a position where we just can't afford to be dealing anyone. Doubt it I think it should performed or -- you -- it's. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- the other hand they're kind of creating its payroll rosters are there going out three or four years Cheney ordered. -- might have a surplus or a whole hour and obviously contract expired at an arbitration. And it mayors particularly are all very -- External energy wrecking their prospects and you know -- game planning what they need to do with respect to their payroll -- roster so. You know it's that it -- distraught but I think it's it's you know -- didn't -- it out and Arjun ordinary yourself but -- -- again most cherished a lot of energy. You know exactly what god Allah that even that would position us they're doing what. It's been an interesting offseason to think back to some former Red Sox prospects for instance. The fact that Jorge tiller roast and just made an agreement just agreed with with the Rockies on his multi year deal. You know obviously Della -- was the center who was the that was probably the top prospect -- has partnered with in the Curt Schilling -- even though he wasn't in the closest Major League ready that was. Casey Fossum at the time but I'm going back to that Curt Schilling deal. What enabled that to happen and what do you remember about the prospect part of the discussion. You know in -- in terms of how that deal came together because a lot has been made of the Thanksgiving dinner and all that but not as much attention has been paid to -- cut to the actual deal that was do work that was consummated by the Red Sox in Diamondbacks. Yeah bearish. -- doors it was probably let issue at the top prospect of you know. -- was being served -- ballad -- -- bears are Kelly Shoppach at that time. Hopefully both sides -- -- Villaraigosa has been ever intend. -- we liked it quite bit here are you tired. -- double that -- -- triple -- Bill without a business so look at starting pitching prospect. And yeah -- the ticket or other secure history on the ground but again issued quietly as catcher called for Colorado the last few years. Active market disorder. So that was so big issue and then you know Chile is no trade so we do we can't help -- a certain period. Aggressor gets there first and apparently. All play if we agree with the Diamondbacks. Did approach chill and convention away there's no trade independent you know I sort doing -- the contract extensions so. -- -- -- certain put it -- a logical order. But. Actually. Lost -- they'll just it would force so. We were understandably focused on getting a little bit better to try to when five market the following year. But you know we've recovered your -- player -- -- In 2005 that was one of the years in which the -- the idea that you guys were over valuing her over hyping your own prospects. Especially the trade deadline. Was getting floated you know that was -- it ends up winning nine to five games making the playoffs. That making the playoffs but -- you know the bullpen. Had issues today you know there was there was an apparent issues on the team and at the trade deadline you guys essentially stood pat. Not at that time you know there have been a raft of prospects. He guys had the system who have become major impact players of the Major League level. Since then the likes of Kevin Youkilis the likes of Jonathan Papelbon the likes of Jon Lester. How do you know that big as it is a gratifying when you don't make deals. You know when trades -- proposed involving players like that and then you're able to see the fruits or you know it. Are you can do is there ever regrets when you don't trade a guy who emerges into an All-Star. Yeah okay it's bad I would do -- it. Goodyear folks -- feasibility table as well as well loaded. You know on the Jewish holy. A lot of those gut feeling good chicks say ten people but I can't. They consider pet ever is sure does to dredge second Papelbon cholesterol level Sanchez. Brent marsh. -- have from the bullpen Manny -- Just a very very talented group and they're obviously -- -- got to turn out of the great things some of those guys didn't didn't media projections and you know we're probably I could have penetrated netter it could help just Serb perfect port twenty hindsight but. There are bad stroke about a pal Ellis who were calling feel after. Pedroia -- indicate it was was third. And fortunately we're really like both boast just like they were championship starting Major League players should it to -- it or should I ended and they were. Pedroia were limited it was a finished third. You know they'll take it out but. -- that they did and that will it look they guess both those gotta believe they could be star players individually and say well they've -- -- dollar. In terms of in terms of deciding what prospects are expendable. To what degree does just the idea that they might be blocked in the system into this in. The reason why I ask is because of another this is before your time with the Red Sox well before but I'm Jeff Bagwell is on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time in his career. Obviously the Red Sox dealt him in four what history will -- is as -- you know as probably being a mistake. Treating him from middle reliever who they had under control from more than -- for more than just a couple months they had him for the next year but still this was Jeff freaking bad Bagwell. Could end up trading on the argument was fit did you know he hadn't shown mightily power and that perhaps more importantly that he was. You know that there were other prospects at his positions who were ahead of him in the system at the time the Red Sox had. Boggs at third base which was back post position they had moved bonnet AAA were as bad what was and wasn't double -- in -- -- they thought was the first baseman of the future. Do you what matters more you know in in situations like that. Proximity to the majors or overall talent you know do you -- does one error on the side of trading. The younger and less established player who's at a lower level of the miners or you know do you go for -- go for -- I think it's (%expletive) that the data -- all of those tractors. -- -- They're they're personnel decision I think you know that I -- players. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- You know there surplus areas for players are blocked but that's again that's going there on top -- or the other change you can. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- So it you know. Yeah -- here which showed a lot of blood outfielders. You know it's Christiane just. You know -- others and social -- deal out of that area in Cleveland. You know -- why don't -- -- pitcher Brian Giles it was kind of blocked her recurring -- obviously that didn't work out too well so. That's something else. Beer beer or doing some particular book you know until surpluses so you're calling them trying to find -- -- there were catching surpluses. Just Belichick -- they -- to create because. You know again I haven't generally your trade out of an -- surplus and had. If you can go to Jupiter after signing international players that they did in early players. Josh I really appreciate your perspective and your time thank you so much for joining. Our next guest on minor details is butch hobson. The former Red Sox player and manager. Who is currently beyond those currently managing. The independent -- Lancaster barnstorm Mars. Which was also the manager of the Red Sox double a affiliate New Britain in 1990. In new Britain and in the past the he was the manager of Jeff Bagwell for his. For what was a spectacular season for him. Back will end up being finishing second in the Eastern League in batting average stay here I'm even though he didn't show much power he only had four homers. I did have quite -- quite a few extra base hits he was is 34 doubles and seven triples than a year. Moreover. Moreover New Britain was thought of as a terrible terrible park. For power hitters knew was apparently it was described to me by by Jim callous of baseball America as the graveyard in that Jim was actually kind enough to send along. What baseball America's right up was of Jeff Bagwell following that following the 1990 season. After he'd been treated from the Red Sox to the Astros. From there Anderson about well ended up being greeted being number two prospect in the asterisk system. Between the number one prospect in the hearts of being you know hands the number three guy Darryl -- also. There was actually -- pretty good list Kenny Lofton was number was number of Kenny Lofton was number four that year Luis Gonzales ended up being number eight. And he was listed it does succeed solid 195 pounds. But I doubt this is what baseball America had to say about Jeff Bagwell. Following this season. Boston's decision to trade back -- Houston after the minor league season was not a popular one in New England. -- -- University of Hartford product one of New England zone. -- missed winning the Eastern League batting title by one point in 1990 a significant feat for a below average runner. He's gotten excellent stroke takes pitches well makes contact and use the whole park. -- is -- can can immediate third though he has a chance to inherit community's job this spring if Kennedy is dealt for much needed pitching. He does not have Kennedy's support arm. But he is considered an above average -- So it's kind of interesting that's it's a fairly it's a fairly. There are reports. That doesn't talk a lot about Bible's power potential. But suffice it to say back well that year in the 1991 season the year after he had been treated by the Red Sox. Ended up being the every -- first baseman for the asterisk. Who elected not to -- Kennedy and he ended up putting the National League rookie of the year honors. And that was the beginning avoid of what now appears like it may well end up being a Hall of Fame career so. -- along the lines of the conversation that we were having with Josh -- about how players are evaluated. In the impacted significance of either over valuing or under valuing your prospects. I talked to butch hobson about how he regarded Jeff Bagwell. In 1990 into how the Red Sox regarded Jeff Bagwell in 1990. And how it was that the Red Sox and the parting with. A player who was you know who really was. In the context of baseball history one of the best ever. Third in exchange for a middle reliever. So here is the interview with butch hobson on minor details. But -- and you with us on minor details this week bush thank you so much for joining us. And welcome quit quit -- the -- bet everybody. As you know Jeff Bagwell is is now first time eligible for the Hall of Fame. He obviously had a a spectacular career with the Astros. After there was a somewhat infamous trade from the Red Sox organization in 1992. The Esther is an exchange for a -- for reliever Larry Anderson. I figured it was worth talking to you about what kind of a prospect Jeff was at the time to that deal was made. In what you knew about how that decision was made to make that trade. So Jeff I guess was that number 32 prospect in Major League in brings the number 32 prospect by baseball America. After the 1990 season with you in New Britain that year he had 333 get a 422 on base percentage. He only had four homers and 61 RBIs but he did have a bunch of doubles I think 34 of them as well as seven triples. All of that being the case based on that package in his performance for you. How did you view him as a prospect at that time. Well -- -- reportedly was David -- typically do they they they didn't play good patriots. You know -- back -- -- -- -- and cardinals got bad debt to get a guy like at third base that's the way -- play. Always had the ability to swing the bat. You know we've played in they would play the hope you have children you Britain and it up big ballpark and not a lot of Roger is that ballpark it's -- very very big ballpark jail was always been -- -- guy. He was that. -- -- league in hitting by a couple of percentage points over data quickly as they it was Lou is Mercedes for the Oreo. It's got down to -- that last week here -- of course the trade happened on Friday. In he ended -- -- the batting title by like a percentage point to Mercedes too because. -- was they want to play those last three games so he he didn't write it rather write reports don't know what he couldn't speak. And it will be. You know if not a third baseman possibly because they had talked about -- from time -- -- where he worked at first base probably -- for a third -- earlier. That he would possibly -- you know move to first. Which was a good decision by you know many Astros for that and -- -- have a clear that he had you know a lot about but rather reports don't give me to death would be great cross. Do you have a best case there -- a form at that time I mean could you have imagined him. Growing into being an All-Star caliber player at that time or. I. Rejected over the guiding it. It was reported -- thirty over woods and visit his career he has power he's just. -- -- was I think it stated that the ball really well. The government will reportedly have been no word. Driving your work with a single -- -- -- instead of driving. Words but he has power potential he has the wide stance he had this crazy it is or demand. They've been you know as he will. Well he learned how to you know elevate the ball a little bit more situations bit though which is that he could grab out of ballparks so. He definitely had the potential could be that guy negated any overt as he did in his career. Have you ever seen anything quite like that batting stance or was it does do did it take you. You know maybe a week to say okay we're just gonna leave it'll owner. Did you look at that we're at that kind of announced -- and -- that pronounced to crouch at that time. And think this is kind of unusual. I could be -- very if it good good good good work and don't try to pick up really well I'm Rick. You know he's always hit right dead and he's had success flight data that violate certain then that means. The guy was there it was the best hitter he's really -- that you don't win would be needed. I think he saw but we also saw a lot different court different. All the different types of batting stances. You know role in the back back -- they -- that Haiti's been anxiety. A little bit different today I would say you know. Is truly similarity history of dips but I think they're just working -- -- hearted support like bill plante here's -- this was. Greenfield was having -- field goal that came also and we're betting stats so. You know I never tinkered with which -- that well what most of what most of what Joe -- would really. Focus so. That was his -- approach. And what he could do to make yourself be. The best hitter he could be endangered data over -- when he had the opportunity to go the big -- That next year it was in 1991 that he ended up being an everyday first baseman with the Astros ended and that he ended up in fact winning the rookie of the year award. -- you think that he was that close to Major League ready or would you have thought that the progression. From that point in 1990 might have been a bit more gradual than that. They don't we utility you know Julie developing wave good double -- level for the most part is where they look at players are still couldn't take it played a big -- Doherty. Bigger bigger AAA player and with a chance. Jeff was projected to be a -- -- -- but felt -- -- you know why are our roving hitting people also decide what. You know the trade was -- we were all shot. But we also realize there were baseball people that happens though. But no lap I was not surprised dead dead he was not able to jump into the jumpers are very really tough kid and that's what it takes to be observed that -- that that level red quick. They be able to handle the pressure be able to handle -- the grind but he was always. You know we've. That New England boys. He has that built up this about. I assumed that it was you you said that it was during that last weekend or those last few days of the 1990 season. That the news came down I assumed it was you who gave him the news that he'd been traded. Do recall that conversation. You actually was kind of weird because I was actually throwing batting practice to -- It was a Friday we actually had a three game series so often if they had already Warren. A spot in the playoffs so we had become two out of three of that series. Actually actually -- the -- book was let is that they were a lot of I think about many things we get that we had to do. We have two out of three to -- despite the -- play out since. I was I had they've figured they came over the loudspeaker was your -- practices said that I had a phone call it I was throwing batting practice -- Ridgefield brokerage gates. But because -- basically all the Lou Gorman. -- -- -- it was at that point which went and took the call came back over fill it didn't between you know just before I was making -- -- to jail. You -- budget well go ahead and he woke up and said. I got pretty interesting news here is that what is it says -- -- played in -- -- he'll play tonight that is. I was going only should they just trading used to. There at that point the eyes to adjust to the dugout we sit down -- -- what was going though we both cried. -- shook his hand out is that you the rest is history. You know. But. At that point she you know was there -- get any conversation along the lines of that we think the world view as a prospect and we think they're going to have AA. You know a big career for review and we had kind of been hoping that it was what the Red Sox. Well that was that was that the conversation material all here yeah. I mean that's what you -- your where's bella you're all those post players that you had that type of quote police fear that fondness for -- it. You know joke anyway just just just knew where he was gonna go in -- -- back -- that this that he was good enough. But you know at that point of it was more or less just. Getting through leadership was very very very. Disappointed that he was -- -- spirits up. See that is step that was the thing I think it was the cup this thing port you know. Are you know -- for beer and watching you know what I told you know what'd he wanted to be a red software that's what -- -- organization he wanted to play for. But he was a Red Sox fans. And I think that was the toughest thing for him at that point. I mean we had you know we have. Conversations during the course of the year about you know preparing him to go the big leagues all the guys like Jerry which -- -- nobody. And the list goes all the players that we're going to be able to play it bought the we will lose more. Well it does point out when that happened. You know global but I try to game to get ready for -- and we had to do what we had a duty did -- -- -- ready to leave because he had -- he had to. Well actually no he did not play the recipe you that you're could not play after the trade because there was only. Well that media days three days after the rigorously of the bodily. So basically it was more -- -- you know. Sitting in this stay as well actually setting all this setting the value -- us watch the game transpires we tried to win two out of three. So given health how highly regarded Jeff at that time. You know and the fact that. That was the fact that he was dealt surprising to you. Word you know is this just part of the business of player development that in very. Blue I didn't go to I didn't know anything about it -- -- noted that did -- did not have I was not told. About any which were not sold everywhere there is best done by the -- opposite Boston. I was not told that there was a possibility that we might be losing a lot of times was situations. I'll ride like that I know today if it's period that trade -- being -- there's word of the trade a lot of that was sort of resolute. They'll tell the manager and that the -- -- to keep his job he keeps his mouth shut -- over the possibility we may -- trade this guy we don't want him playing. Tonight or tomorrow night until this is good because of the fact that he might get injured. But do whatever it said that cable completely as a shock to me. That last -- out an -- I mean. But you know let -- -- there and I think. Two objectives to the playoffs since Larry Andersen was regarded very highly regarded. Stick ball pitcher that has had a lot of success it was a good got to bring an addiction to avoid part. Do to make. So we go I'd just stay you know you've got to -- well coming up but first in these guys waited. They always still still being main guy in Bosnia at third base that point -- guess they figured. That you know they can afford to make this strike you know. I know from from my perspective. We have projected it was a big league player. Now whether or not I get out. Or are my only people. Felt the same way -- about -- -- -- that they did but a lot of times that the game that's what happens and again. It isn't his team and all that well from this -- You can -- That is incredible career really. You mentioned that you know Tim Boggs was that was at third base although he did you know of course leave as a free agent after the 92 seasons so about two years out from them. No bond was you know looked like he was a guy who is going to be. A member of the lineup Scott Cooper you know was someone who is also on the system capable playing the two corners. In those situations you know when you have a player as talented as Jeff. The mistake to view players being essentially blocked. Or you know when do you make a call like that -- was that the right time. You know I guess what I'm guessing that is what I'm getting that is you know trying to figure out how that decision was made and you know what variables made Jeff expendable and whether or not there was you know it's something that should have been waited a little bit differently than it actually was. Well that that that you -- on the front of the people about that you -- -- Haywood Sullivan Lou Gorman. About debt debt -- completely not my it was not my job. My job was to develop the talent to visually and head to get a chance to go to Boston up ought to win a championship so I can't answer that question. That wouldn't speculate that to that question because you know. Was an organizational guy -- -- -- organizational got that that question would have had been answered by bill Haywood and it blew it and you know some of the people there worry is -- the problem is that. You work and you and of course the manager. The Red Sox from ninety to 94. That keeps one's hands full no doubt. But during that time Jeff of course was emerging as something of a superstar in Houston. Where was there ever a kind of what if game that you played during that time about. You know we're we have you know would we have been able to -- Jeff into the lineup here how what to -- work would know of ended up its DH that sort of thing or you know -- -- so yeah. That does not have worked brother you know we hit it that you I looked good. -- I looked at Jeff Bagwell every year -- was doing was so glad -- proud for Hillary he made his name. Away from you know where you really wanted to -- -- his career he made his brain there. We know what they did everything happens for a reason. We do have Scott Cooper coming up Scott was not the hitter that joke was but he was a very very good defense at third baseman. You know mobile and avoid -- if you look at -- he was up either very very. You know low draft pick. -- -- go elected twentieth thirtieth summit. I don't think is quite down that low but I think that he was pretty low profile guy who's Greg may be around like the fourth or fifth round out of out of Hartford -- yeah. So it doesn't. What university are good really without the ability that by the state got out of a little bit lower than that. Hey I just think debt debt debt we never I never looked back and say you know what what we had back we're here. We don't they've been of course you know -- was in sight to the head of the -- -- his career. But did you guys -- -- waiting in the wings. -- as -- advocate papers of third baseman -- doesn't get what bags ended up doing in his career but. So we never looked back is that this -- say you know what if what if it was. What is I personally was advantage of that or what you've accomplished. As I mentioned at the start of this he is now on the Hall of Fame ballot with a great case as the first ballot candidate. What are your thoughts on his career and what does it mean for you personally to -- in their -- This kind of pivotal point that really you know ended up giving him the opportunity that he had when he got it. We -- much Sergio bad weather wise. Well the first time that I had it was an instructional league -- ever -- may have worked you know work harder than you know. I've ever so -- -- -- to go out there won't -- ball after ground ball after ground ball after ground ball. He was very quiet he was that he was old school. He played hard he played for real hard. He immediately changed. He never chase through as clearly. -- never heard anything negative about just babble then your career being there live in the fact that he became the superstar they get deliver anything negative. From anybody about ailment it to maintain that type of of character. From your career in this year's ensure that you play individually is quite is quite special and but I am so happy good. You know we knew it was going to be on the ballot political period ahead so at the united. I think you're very well this very much deserves to be in the hall of fame and it I'm just happy that I was able to mention for per year. Really grill room with a -- Billy what's. Which thank you so much for the time this has been really an interesting an interesting trip down to circle back -- time. In a Red Sox uniform it's you know obviously it's been a what if game that's been played. By by fans if not by those who are in lurid uniform who I think are more understanding of why deals are made. When they're made but nonetheless it is it just gives an opportunity to reflect on an extraordinary baseball career. It's very very much I really appreciate you including me in this. Thanks so much for listening to this week's edition of minor details next week we'll be live from Orlando where we have to be offering -- more regular updates during the week about what's been taking place at the winter meetings. Certainly will be giving an update from the rule five draft. And perhaps will be giving some will be checking in. Earlier in the week as well about ten of the day to day activities of the Red Sox in their applications for the farm system. So again thanks for joining. Thanks once again for your feedback on a weekly basis. And we'll try to do better next week.

News & Analysis