From LA Observed:
So the other day I’m listening to 710 AM, and I hear Andrew Siciliano ask several times: “If Clayton Kershaw is untouchable, then who is touchable?” Siciliano genuinely didn’t know, and his partner Mychal Thompson couldn’t answer the question, probably because the only thoughts in head were “Kobe, Kobe, Kobe, Kobe, Kobe…”
Now, I normally like Andrew Siciliano. He does a terrific job hosting the Red Zone Channel on Sundays for DirecTV. And when he fills in for Jim Rome or when he did his old show for Fox Sports Radio, he usually constructs well-thought arguments that I respect, even if I disagree with them. I was pleased to learn recently that he would have a regular local show on KSPN 710 (even though it is with Thompson).
But I think Siciliano asked the question because he doesn’t really know who is good in the Dodgers farm system. In fact, I don’t think anyone in the LA media really knows which Dodger prospects are good, and who the team could legitimately give up for Roy Halladay.
Again, this baffles me. It would seem to me that if your profession is to cover the Los Angeles sports world on a daily basis, then you should have at least a passing knowledge of the Dodgers top prospects. I don’t expect local media types to be watching games in Albuquerque and Chattanooga. But I do expect smarter suggestions than Clayton Kershaw for Roy Halladay.
This caught my eye because it reminded me a lot of the local talk radio scene, where the number 1 host in the area knows Jesus Montero as “that catchuh in AA that everyone likes so much.” The fact that people who do not know anything about the #3 prospect in all of baseball are the ones informing the masses leads local fans to view prospects in a dismissive light. You will hear trade proposals from fans that empty a farm system because they really do not know much about the minor leaguers, and the hosts that they trust are not about to inform them.
The question, of course, is if this is a bad thing. Those of us that know all about the prospects quickly become attached to each one and their chances to prosper. We tend to overvalue them, and suddenly we are loathe to give up Austin Jackson or Austin Romine to improve the club. Considering that most prospects fail, maybe being less educated about them until they show up in the Bronx is not such a bad thing after all. While it is easy to say that a middle ground exists, it is in practice very difficult for a fan to identify that ground and stick to it.
What do you think? Does knowing a lot about prospects lead to overvaluation of those assets by the educated fan? Does it cloud our judgment of what might be a fair trade?
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