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Worst GM Poll: Bill Bavasi vs. Brian Sabean

UPDATE: This poll is now closed.

Today's contest features the Mariners' Bill Bavasi (4) against Brian Sabean (1) of the Giants.

This is the moment we've all been waiting for, folks -- Sabean had a bye in the first round and then got a free pass through the second round after Wayne Krivsky was fired. But now, the legend has finally entered the ring.

If you want to appreciate Sabean's work, you should check out this hilarious article , which is supposed to be a defense of Sabean. The article has already been skewered pretty nicely by Fire Joe Morgan, but if you don't mind, I'd like to take that skewer and put it on the barbecue.

My kid and I write a blog together. In our latest offering, we argued who's a better general manager, Brian Sabean or Billy Beane, and I chose Sabean, although Beane is very good...

Sabean made the daring, unpopular trade of Matt Williams for Jeff Kent, which set up the Giants for years. Beane never makes trades like that. One reader pointed to Beane's Mark Mulder for Dan Haren, Daric Barton and Kiko Calero trade as proof Beane can deal like Sabean. Please. Haren already is gone. All Beane's good young guys already are gone -- Tim Hudson, Nick Swisher, Miguel Tejada. I could go on.

What difference does it make if Haren is already gone? If Beane held on to Haren rather than dealing him, wouldn't that make him popular and un-"daring"? Aren't "daring" trades pretty much Beane's entire M.O.? When's the last time Sabean made a "daring" trade? Forget it. Let's move on.

The A's aren't a baseball team. They're a baseball clearing house. In and out. In and out.

That sounds hot.

As far as Daric Barton goes, well, in the first place, who the heck is Daric Barton? He is someone who may be, could be, perhaps, will be good. And if he becomes a standout player, it's, "Hey, Daric, you're out of here" -- perhaps to Kansas City for four no-name players Beane will trade down the line if they achieve anything worthwhile.

Yes, just like Haren never achieved anything worthwhile for the A's. And... Kansas City? Seriously? The A's got Jermaine Dye and Johnny Damon from Kansas City! Anyway, sorry, this is supposed to be about Sabean.

That's how I feel. But, I can't ignore reality -- no one defends Sabean, his reputation is in the dumper. It's in the dumper even though he was under orders from up above, I believe, to patch together a team around the grumpy power-hitting left fielder because while the grumpy power-hitting left fielder was here, fans would not accept young players and rebuilding.

Wait, sorry, ladies and gentlemen, we've gotten it wrong. Stop the presses! We need a new headline! SMALL-TIME COLUMNIST "BELIEVES" SABEAN UNDER ORDERS TO ASSEMBLE RIDICULOUSLY CRAPPY TEAM. There, that's better.

By the way, what the hell is a "dumper"?

And that's what Sabean did. He patched. You can question his guts -- interesting because his persona is Mr. Tough Guy. He could have fought back or even quit -- people do quit. He didn't show mondo guts allowing the Barry Bonds cronies and that one drug dealer to lurk in the clubhouse. Those are strikes against him.

Keep in mind, again, that this is supposed to be a defense of Sabean.

Sabean has other strikes against him, lots of crummy free-agent signings -- Armando Benitez, Edgardo Alfonzo, Ray Durham, and yes, Barry Zito. He is notorious for one stinker of a lousy trade -- Joe Nathan, a terrific closer, and two other players for -- hold your nose -- A.J. Pierzynski.

And the other two players were Francisco Liriano and Boof Bonser. And the Zito contract was the biggest one ever given to a pitcher. Nice work, Sabean.

After Dusty Baker left, Sabean hired Felipe Alou, who was too old, a guy the players couldn't stand. And now he has Bruce Bochy, who's shown no aptitude to rebuild a team that desperately needs rebuilding.

Looks like everything's under control here. I'm going to go take a nap. Call me if you need me...

The Giants' farm system has been a joke, nothing like the A's -- this is a positive Billy point here. The only productive player the Giants' farm system produced in the current century was Pedro Feliz, and he wasn't all that productive.

To be fair, there's also Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain. But yeah, the guy's got a point. When's the last time Sabean drafted and developed a good hitter?

So, what can he do? Well, he needs to peel away the veterans like layers of an onion. Any team that depends heavily on Durham, Dave Roberts, Rich Aurilia and even Omar Vizquel is a team going nowhere. He needs to find out if his young guys can play. Amend that. He'd better pray his young guys can play -- Eugenio Velez, Dan Ortmeier, Brian Bocock, Fred Lewis and Rajai Davis. Aside from Velez, I don't feel confident about any of those guys. Do you?

I'll go a step further -- I don't even feel confident about Velez! Davis, by the way, has already been designated for assignment.

Now that he is free -- finally free -- to make a real team, Sabean has to show he has a vision for his club and knows how to bring that vision to life -- not this year, but certainly in 2009 and after.

Got that? The current composition of the team must not be Sabean's fault. I'm sure he was under orders to trade three good players for A.J. Pierzynski and to intentionally give away his first-round draft picks and to jerry-rig his farm system so as to not develop a good hitter in an entire decade. Not his fault! Now he's really in charge.

I have defended Sabean, but now it's up to him. He has to defend himself.

"I give up."

Make sure to check out my writeup about Bavasi before you vote.