We recently caught up with one of The Bigs' original GMs, Anaheim's drvmu1, to chat about the shape of the Chiles franchise, how he constructs an HBD lineup as well as some Missouri Tigers and Kansas City Chiefs talk. Here's what drvmu1 had to say:
Which of your HBD teams is your favorite and why?
Probably the El Paso Federales in Fingers League. This was a team that was completely dead and bloated when I took over. I had the #1 overall pick that year, and have held onto the team now for nine consecutive seasons, and won 95 games last year. It has been an enjoyable rebuild.
Who would you say is the greatest player in the history of the Chiles?
Tough question. Certainly, James Dixon is the highest rated I have had, but he admittedly has underperformed. On the pitching side, Ajax Drabek was a stud in the formative years of this league, but he lacked longevity due to his age. Mateo Batista is a definite ace now, with a Cy Young award and a No HItter under his belt at the tender age of 27 - so there is more to come with him. However, when you look purely at the total numbers, Dixon probably has to get the nod.
It looks like Anaheim will be left out of the playoffs again this season. What sort of plans do you have for the Chiles heading into season 10?
Again - good question. This division is so tough, so it is difficult to make a move. I like my young pitching staff, and with MIke Lowery joining Victor Deleon, along with Peaches Thompson and Batista we are going to be solid. I think the effort really needs to be made in the pen - a definite upgrade is required. It would also be nice to acquire a true lead off presence to be a hell raiser at the top of the order.
Your star 3B James Dixon will be a free agent after nest season. Do you have plans on resigning him and if he refuses to negotiate during next season, could we possibly see him traded before the season 10 trade deadline?
We will make every effort to re-sign James. However, as indicated in the world chat earlier this year, we remain open to offers. If he refuses to re-sign, then yes, we will look more seriously at offers versus what we may get with a Type A pick (depending on how we are doing in our division and in the playoff hunt).
You’ve got a couple of big time starting pitching prospects making their way through your minors right now. When do we get to see Mike Lowery’s major league debut and what kind of timetable do you have for Andres James?
As I stated earlier, Lowery is on target for early next year. Andres James will take a few years. We will just have to see how he develops. No need to rush things with the ways things are shaping up with the ML rotation.
So you’re a football fan from Missouri…Rams fan?
Not Rams - I am a KC guy. So, the Chiefs are my NFL team. However, my real passion is college football and my Missouri Tigers. I have be a season ticket holder for 12 years now - looking forward to Blaine Gabbert having a BIG year this fall. Watch out for Aldon Smith all non-believers, he could be the best defensive player ever to come out of the Show Me State by the time all is said and done.
So you're a Chiefs fan, eh? I've been wondering; is Matt Cassel the real deal at QB or was he a product of the Patriot's offense?
Hmmm... well, let me qualify this by stating up front that I am an unabashed optomist when it comes to my sports teams. I think Cassell will have a better year this year than last, and next year (2011), he will be back near Patriots form. I just believe in Pioli and what he is doing. I can't imagine that he would have invested that much in Cassell if he thought he was a simply a product of the Patriots offense.
What are you looking for from a hitter’s ratings when you’re putting together your batting lineups?
I definitely look at splits first. However, there needs to be a threshold met for eye and contact, depending on where in the order you plan to have the guy hit. Of course a good balance of all types of hitters is desireable, but power seems to be king in a lot of the HBD worlds I am in.
If you could change one thing about HBD, what would it be and why?
I still think the offense is out of whack with reality a little. Although things have gotten better over the past season with the changes to home run frequency, I don't think we are quite at a level truly reflective of reality yet. Also, it seems that there is an overemphasis on prospects. In reality, although guys may be highly thought of as "can't miss" prospects, many of the fail (i.e. Ruben Mateo, Alex Gordon, etc.). I don't how it can be done, but it would be good to de-emphasize the importance of prospects a little to increase the value of veterans by having more true "busts" despite the ratings