Bullpen Committees

Wednesday, January 08 2003 @ 05:34 AM EST

Contributed by: Coach

"I like it,'' says Toronto GM J.P. Ricciardi flatly. "I think they're on to something.''

"I think it's great,'' adds Oakland GM Billy Beane.

The most innovative MLB front office minds agree that Theo Epstein is doing the right thing in Boston by not employing a Proven Closer. This report, by Sean McAdam of the Providence Journal, mentions the biggest reason most teams won't change:

(Grady) Little may find he will have to manage egos as well as innings as the experiment unfolds. Today's players are notorious for their need to have specified roles and the inherent uncertainty of the committee approach is bound to unnerve some.

Are you listening, Kelvim? If it can be "sold" to the pitchers involved, it's not only a more flexible approach, it's less expensive. Here's J.P. again, on baseball's reluctance to break with tradition: "We get afraid to do something because conventional wisdom tells us it can't be done.'' The new and improved Blue Jays are fearless.