by "Biggest Daddy"
Interview with Jim Doyle,
Manchester Irish Rebels
Thank you for sitting down with us for another installment of "BDBL: A
retrospective". Generally speaking, how do you feel about the BDBL?
JIM DOYLE: I love the BDBL because it combines the best baseball
software with the best rulebook and a great group of owners. The
Commissioner of the league has a beautiful wife and a great family so I
can put up with him.
BD: How have you felt about the overall success of your franchise at
JD: The franchise has averaged 69 wins a year so I have not seen any
success so far. I am hopeful that we are building a nucleus for the
future with players like Carlos Gomez, BJ upton, Adam Jones, Brett
Cecil, Phil Hughes, Matt Dominguez, etc...
BD: What is your favorite aspect of the BDBL?
JD: I love several aspects of the BDBL. First, the factors I
mentioned in question 1. In addition, I love going to BDBL weekends
drinking Jamba Juice, meeting members of the Cleveland Chamber of
Commerce, sleeping on the floors of hotel rooms when Glander is in
charge of reserving hotel rooms, discussing politics, religion and
philosophy with Brian Potrafka during a game, etc.... etc..... etc....
BD: Tell us the absolute low point of your franchise, whether it was a
particular game lost, or a particular trade ripped to shreds, or a
particular fellow GM that ticked you off.
JD: I have suffered from several low points in franchise history.
Glander listed the 10 worst trades in league history and I had 4 out of
the 10, including the the top 2. So, I would say I need to join AA for
GMs addicted to bad trades. I just fall in love with one aspect of a
deal and overlook everything else. Some of those trades on the day after
look like a Coyote Ugly woman.
BD: Over the course of your time in the BDBL, who is the one GM that you
consider your largest rival or target?
JD: I think Mike Glander is the primary target of my wrath. There
are many factors used to consider who your primary rival should be but
Mike takes the cake. I mean, the guy has the audacity to move to New
Hampshire, my home turf. Then I have to listen to his rants and raves
about how boring Hockey is as a sport. I mean, does the guy realize he
can be deported back to Connecticut for making statements like "I rather
watch grass grow in my backyard than watch College Hockey playoffs...."
This is definitely an Anti-New Hampshire statement. The guy leaves me
with a mentally ill homeless street person in Cleveland when I am trying
to help fellow BDBL owners find a place to eat, he makes me sleep on a
hotel floor when he tells me I can share a hotel room with him (by the
way, the room was the size of a shoebox, just ask Newgard), he snores so
loud hotel security is called to investigate what animal is sleeping in
the room, etc... etc... etc.....
BD: Name a GM that you absolutely love to talk trade with.
JD: Warning: The following comment may not be appropriate for
children under 18. Since I have made so many bad trades in the past,
BDBL owners treat me like a frat whore at a rush party. I mean, I get
such outlandish trade offers from unnamed BDBL owners that they can not
keep a straight face when they make the offers. Thank God Todd Bliss has
joined the Irish Rebels to help me keep my self respect.
BD: How did you first hear of the BDBL?
JD: I belonged to the EBA DMB run by some of Glander's favorite
former owners and I was getting tired of their personalities so I looked
up the list of leagues on the DMB website and liked the BDBL website and
BD: What would it take for you to exit the league?
JD: If all the other owners in the league all left and I was left
all alone with Glander.
BD: What is your favorite BDBL memory?
JD: You have to understand that my favorite baseball memories are
watching Bob Gibson and Sandy Koufax pitch in the mid to late 60s. With
that said, Kerry Wood's no hitter ranks number 1. A close second was the
year I did not realize we could draft minor leaguers in Chapter 4 so I
picked up Rickey Henderson, one of my favorite ballplayers of all time.
Man, did I hear it for missing that rule change. Anyway, we had a BDBL
weekend shortly thereafter and I think I was playing Newgard and someone
else with most of the guys in the hotel room and everyone is making fun
of my Henderson pick. Rickey leads off the first inning with a a HR and
hits about 3 or 4 dingers in 2 series. SAY HELLO TO MY LITTLE
FRIEND still rings in my ears.
BD: What is your best trade ever? And your worst?
JD: I do not think I ever made a good trade. As for my worst, just
go to the history page and read about the top 10 worst trades and look
at numbers 1, 2, 4 and 7.
BD: Other than Glander, what GM would you absolutely hate to see leave
JD: I think the premise of the question is incorrect. I would love
to see the Commish leave the BDBL. :)
BD: Who is the craziest character in the BDBL?
JD: I think Brian Potrafka is exactly the kind of guy you would
expect to see if you mixed Robin Williams, Sylvia Plath, Fredich
Nietzche and a strong dash of Theo Epstein. Unfortunately, you are never
sure what aspect of the these personalities you will be dealing with in
any encounter with Brian. He is just the kind of guy you want in the
league as long as you do not have to room with him. :)
BD: If your franchise had a Team Hall of Fame, which players would be
JD: Kerry Wood given his no hitter. No one else has earned the right
to be in the Irish Rebel HOF.
BD: Tell us which MLB team that you feel like your BDBL franchise is the
JD: Great question. I would say we are a lot like the Kansas City
Royals. We made the BDBL playoffs in the first year of the franchise
existence but we have suffered from bad management until Todd Bliss
joined the organization. So, I think we are capable of rebounding.
BD: Jim, there is no doubt about the fact that we love you, but 9
straight losing seasons. Why is the formula not working?? You going to
get this turned around?
JD: We are absolutely going to succeed and the reason we are going
to succeed is because we are changing the formula and the management.
You can look at our high rankings in the league in acquiring prospects
and we have changed the formula we use when considering trades. Finally,
we are using more sophisticated decision trees when making in game
decisions. Unfortunately, the team is 16-24 as I write this but I think
you will see improvement over the long term.
BD: How has your overall team-building philosophy changed over the
JD: It has taken me 10 years to realize that Jeff Paulson and Greg
Newgard know what they are talking about. I think Jeff understands how
to build a team by emphasizing grabbing the best prospects before anyone
else knows about them. I think Newgard is one of the best GMs when it
comes to making trades and I also think he is one of the best game day
managers in the league. So, I am spending a lot of time trying to figure
out their formulas. Finally, I think Todd Bliss will improve our
financial ability to get the most bang for our buck during auctions. As
an example, I think Todd did a great job of getting AJ Burnett and Greg
Maddux while fitting them into our long range plan.
BD: What has been the most significant change in the BDBL?
JD: I think the auction has really changed the dynamics of the
league and I am still trying to understand just how much it has changed
BD: Name your favorite "off-the-field" moment from BDBL Weekend or the
JD: I think taking the boys to enjoy some KC barbeque and having
dinner with my sister Sara and introducing her and her family to Glander
BD: Cain, Hamels, Kazmir....any regrets?
JD: Leave the past to the mercy of God....
BD: Tell us a little bit about how you and Todd share the
responsibilities of running this franchise. How did you know Todd and is
he providing the needed impact?
JD: We are still working out the kinks but basically Todd is in
charge of the farm system and contracts and I usually manage the club.
We both share the trade negotiations but I can make a move if I think it
will not violate some of his rules.
We both have season tickets to the New Hampshire Fischer Cats, the Class
AA Eastern League farm team for the Toronto Blue Jays. Todd and his wife
sit right behind Maureen and me. Todd works as a financial analyst so he
is really good at allocating funds for contracts and he actually knows
real baseball scouts so he is good at suggesting prospects to watch. He
is a real asset to the franchise.
BD: Thanks, Jim!