Baseball BeatJanuary 20, 2006
The Ballad of Ned
By Rich Lederer

Here We Go, Dodger Fans was one of the more controversial articles I've posted at Baseball Analysts. In fact, it seemed to be as polarizing among readers as the trade that sent Edwin Jackson and Chuck Tiffany to Tampa Bay for Danys Baez and Lance Carter.

Although the column only generated about a tenth as many comments as a typical Jon Weisman post at Dodger Thoughts, it received more than our normal share. The debate centered on two questions: (1) was it a good or bad trade and (2) an indication that similar trades might be in the offing as well?

I thought the deal was ill conceived and expressed concern that it could also be a harbinger of things to come. Look, I might be wrong on both fronts. We shall see. In the meantime, I remain steadfast in my belief that Jackson and Tiffany will provide more long-term value than Baez and Carter. Sure, the latter may be more useful to the Dodgers in 2006, but what about 2007 and beyond?

Perhaps Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti and I see things differently. With that in mind and in the spirit of fun, I present to you The Ballad of Ned, sponsored by Kellogg's Corn Flakes.

Come and listen to a story about a man named Ned
A poor Assistant General Manager, barely kept his family fed,
Then one day he was interviewin' in L.A.,
And exiting the freeway at Dodger Stadium Way.

Traffic that is, brown smog, California tea.

Well, the first thing you know ol' Ned's a millionaire,
The San Fran folk said Ned move away from there
Said Southern California should be awfully keen
So they loaded up the truck and moved to Chavez Ravine.

Dodger Stadium, that is.
Grady Little, aging stars.

The Beverly McCourts!

If Colletti wins a title in his first year (a la Paul DePodesta in 2004) but fails to do so in his second, we just may be hearing the following verse in October 2007...

Well, now it's time to say good-bye to Ned and all his kin.
They would like to thank the fans fer kindly droppin' in.
You're all invited back next year to this locality
To have a heapin' helpin' of the McCourts' hospitality.

Frank and Jamie, that is. Buy a team. Drive it into the ground. Y'all come back now, y'hear?

Hey, if I'm wrong, I will be the first critter to yell, "Well doggies!"


Aha! You admit that the purpose of your articles is to generate controversy. That makes you the Howard Cosell of Fantasy Baseball!

Nicely done Rich.

Flatt and Scruggs wouldn't have traded Edwin Jackson.

Very good. I agree giving up Jackson and Tiffany is playing for this year at best, hard to believe in the dodgers rich system they dont have anyone they can put in middle relief and do almost as well as Baez and Carter. Keep the good work rolling....

Nice. Though Flatt and Scruggs performed the theme song (on instruments at least) the song itself was written by Paul Henning, who was also the series creator. He died this past year which is how I know that piece of trivia.

I just finished Phillip Roth's "The Plot Against America", so I have in my head that Sabean has some blackmail material against Colletti and is actually pulling the Dodger GM strings from SF. How else do you explain this trade?

Yes, it was a fun discussion. And I will be right there to call you on your promise when you are proven wrong . . . ;)

And likewise, I'll be here to admit I was wrong if things play out the way you see them. Of course the last time I was wrong, Ken Landreaux was my favorite Dodger, so don't hold you breath . . . ;)

No matter what happens, good,bad or ugly I'll always be a TRUE BLUE DODGER FAN!!!

I think the truth lies somewhere in between.

Edwin seems destined to fail to live up to his (lofty) expectations, and Tiffany is a live arm (TINSTAAPP). So it's probable that the Dodgers won't end up regretting losing those 2. That being said, the players they got were pretty poor. I don't have a problem giving up Edwin and Tiffany, but for Danys fricking Baez and a bag of Cheetos? Terrible.

As a long suffering Giants fan, I think the Sabean/Colletti model is to use the minor league system as a well to dip into to trade for overrated veterans. Develop pitching prospects, hype them up, then trade them for 2nd tier "established veterans" when the 2nd tier "established veterans" you've signed in free agency don't pan out.

This may all be moot if the McCourts have to answer to Mr. Drysdale (Milburn) from the bank.