by "Biggest Daddy"
Interview with Greg
San Antonio Broncs
BIGGEST DADDY: Thank you for
sitting down with us for another installment of "BDBL: A retrospective."
Generally speaking, how do you feel about the BDBL?
NEWGARD: Biggest Daddy, itís always a pleasure. I know the point
has been made time and time again on the message board and in person at
BDBL Weekend, but in my opinion this is the best damn DMB league out
BD: How have you felt about the overall success of your franchise at
Well, I can only speak personally for the six seasons Iíve been at helm,
but looking back at the teamís history, Iíd have to characterize our
overall success as disappointing. No division championships, three wild
cards, just one from me, and no playoff series victories. Overall, I
think weíve underachieved every step of the way and this season has been
BD: What is your favorite aspect of the BDBL?
think itís the salary structure. Itís what drew me to the league and I
think it permeates every aspect of this league. I think it bring us as
close to being real GMs as weíre going to possibly get and makes the
experience much more enjoyable than other leagues.
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 pissed
GN: Biggest Daddy, the one is far too easy
as Iím not sure that would will ever heal completely. 2005 OLDS Game 7.
The franchise was stuck rebuilding for two seasons when I took over
because our cupboard was completely bare after the failed 2002 playoff
run from Phoenix. Being in a tight race with Sylmar and have the
division title settled on the final day of the season was the most
excitement our fans had seen in awhile. Then we get to face that same
Sylmar team in the opening round knowing very well that weíd probably go
We drop two there, win the next three in
Silicon Valley. We got blown out in Game 6 back in Sylmar, setting up
that predestined finale. Chris Carpenter gets into a 3-0 hole after two
innings, but keeps in there. We get a huge 3-run shot from Kevin Mench
to tie it in the 4th. Then Trevor Hoffman gives up a two-out single to
Juan Uribe in the 8th to lose it. It was a classic ending to a classic
series during an exciting season. I still dream about getting a chance
to take on Salem, knowing their playoff history.
BD: Over the course of your time
in the BDBL, who is the one GM that you consider your largest rival or
GN: Sylmar and
John Duel for the reasons I just mentioned in your last question.
Honestly, I hated his guts in 2005. I think I took it personally, but he
and his team would literally turn my stomach any time I thought of them.
The resentment for Ď05 lasted well into the í06 season. Today, that
bitter hatred isnít there, and I donít really know why it was there in
the first place. But I think there is still a fierce rivalry there and I
think itís great to have a rival like that, especially within your
division and I think the feeling is mutual.
Of course, Iíd like to develop that same level of animosity with the
rest of the Griffin Division, but the Undertakers have always owned me
and I still pretty much own the Jamboree, so there hasnít been that
two-way fight between either of those teams quite like there was with
Sylmar and continues to be.
BD: Name a GM that you absolutely love to talk trade with.
GN: The bad boys of the league: The
Emperor and The Commish.
dealing with Tom just because itís an upfront negotiation. There arenít
any hidden agendas and heíll tell you where you stand. Heís also very
well informed with the rest of the league due to his network of
contacts. He had the rep of someone looking to take advantage of
someone, but I think most of us fall into that category at some point.
I like dealing with Mike because heís always looking for that edge, but
heís always doing it in a fair way. I think he gets a bad rap, but I
honestly think he is trying to be fair. Sure, you may question how he
values certain commodities, but I really donít think heís trying to
screw anyone, because it wouldnít be in his best interest as the leader
of this league to do so.
teams that are always going for it and stay in the race year after year
and that is why I choose those guys. I know I canít be the kind of GM
because I get too invested in my team.
BD: How did you first hear of the
GN: The DMB league
page. I was in three leagues that were all very similar. No salary,
boring year-end draft. Just typical stuff. I came across the opening and
checked out the rulebook and fell in love. I put my app in right away
and got lucky. I ended up dropping my other three leagues in less than
three months time.
would it take for you to exit the league?
GN: Mike leaving. This baby is his and no
one could replace what he does or what he brings to the table year in,
year out. If he ever stepped down, Iíd resign the next day because I
donít think the league could survive without him.
BD: What is your favorite BDBL memory?
GN: 2008 BDBL Weekend. There was a
situation during the weekend that wonít be shared with rest of the
league out of respect for one of our owners, but seeing how a group of
guys would came to the aid of one of us was just great to see. Deep
down, weíre all friends and thatís what the league is really all about.
BD: What is your best trade ever? And
GN: Sorry New
Milford, but Iíve got to pick the Danny Haren trade. Haren for Carpenter
and J.P. Howell. I couldnít say yes fast enough and got to dump salary
and get a stud start for seven seasons. No brainer.
As far as worst goes, nothing of the likes
of Chipper-for-Dempster thankfully. But with that said, any trade where
you go out willingly and acquire Austin Kearns has to rank at the top.
With Jose Lopez seeming ready to explode as the Marinersí 2B, I sent
Orlando Hudson to Salem for Kearns. Lopez is still young and showing
some signs of breaking out, but Kearns has been an absolute turd in the
punchbowl. Luckily, I only have three more seasons (at 26.7M) to live
that abortion of a decision down.
BD: Other than Glander, what GM would you
absolutely hate to see leave the BDBL?
GN: Any of them. This is a great group of
owners and Iíd hate seeing any of them leave. Sharky would have been top
of my list, but heís already left us, bastard.
BD: Who is the craziest character in the
GN: Is this a trick
question? If itís not Brian Potrafka, then Iím a kumquat. His rants are
legendary. I actually get nervous during those pregnant pauses in our
series where I can imagine him putting his head through a sheetrock wall
and breaking a bear bottle or something.
BD: If your franchise had a Team
Hall of Fame, which 7-8 players would be members?
GN: Nate Robertson and Orlando Hernandez
get nods in the Special Achievement Wing of our Hall for throwing no-nos.
Ryan Drese gets a spot in the WTF Wing with his 20 wins back in 2005. He
should have gotten the Cy Young that season just for the sheer audacity
of being able to say ďRyan Drese, 20 Game winner.Ē
But for actual franchise accomplishments,
we donít have anyone. Weíve never had a premiere player signed for long
enough to earn that right. But we are more working on our future
exhibits for Danny Haren and Huston Street. Those two players will end
up holding most of big pitching records when their contracts run out.
Adam Dunn may get there with a few more 40 HR seasons. Iíve got high
hopes for some of the youngsters here. I do know that we will be
re-assigning Austin Kearns to be a janitor in the Hall for 2009 instead
of actually suiting up for us.
BD: Tell us which MLB team that you feel
like your BDBL franchise is the most like.
GN: Iíd have to say the Houston Astros,
pre-1997. They were a team that put together some good runs here and
there, but never enjoyed post season success. Weíre hoping the next few
years model the Astros post-í97 as we get some Division titles and some
playoff success and maybe a Series shot.
BD: You have a nifty little team website
there. How did that come about?
GN: From the old rule where we got
extra salary cap room for stuff like pictures and logos. I got a whole
100K for coming with a website, but I like web page design and graphic
design as kinds of hobbies, so it was a good outlet to pour into my team
and into my hobbies.
has your overall team-building philosophy changed over the years?
GN: Iím not sure it has changed, because
Iím not sure Iíve deviated from it. Iíve always tried to focus on
finding those cheap useful players or the occasional farm player
darkhorse that blossoms into a stud. A few years back, I decided to try
and get some core players through about 2011-2012 that would allow me to
be competitive and have several shots at the playoffs and this was
supposed to be the first season that the plan bore fruit, but it looks
like weíll have to wait for í09. But that plan is still there and weíve
been successful plugging in holes with gambles like David Murphy,
Edinson Volquez, Jeremy Guthrie. In 2012, most of our tied up salary
will be gone and we may very well go into that draft with 63M available.
That will be Phase II. But there has never really been a Plan B right
now because weíre focused on Plan A.
BD: What has been the most significant
change in the BDBL?
joined right when the auction was put into place, but I really think
that has been the most significant change, although I worry about 2009
when our penalties start sticking and our individual salary caps move. I
think that has the potential to be the most significant, but we wonít
see that for a few more years.
BD: Name your favorite "off the field"
moment from BDBL Weekend or the league forum.
GN: I donít have a single favorite. There
has been the April Foolsí jokes on the forum, leaving Doyle with the
Cleveland Chamber of Commerce, the trade negotiations on the way to
Kansas City. The numerous beers consumed and the number of stories told
and re-told just make it all worthwhile. I wouldnít miss a Weekend for
the world and encourage everyone to make at least one and try to make as
many as financially possible.
BD: Tell us a little about your 2005 Wild Card playoff experience. Was
it what you anticipated?
It was what I anticipated, except that it was too short. I wanted the
run to be longer. This is my 13th DMB season and Iíve logged over 2,000
games played and those seven games were easily the most exciting and
most stressful Iíve ever played. I just hope that my 2009 playoff
experience gets to top that.
BD: Can we expect your team name to stick for a while now?
GN: As long as I stay in San Antonio, it
will. Iíve only changed whenever Iíve moved my family and I donít
anticipate that for awhile. We are happy here in San Antonio and the job
is doing great, so I donít think Iíll be moving anytime soon.
With my hobby of graphic design, Iím
always try to tweak the logo but Iím keeping the name until the next
BD: Thanks Greg!
GN: Thank you Biggest Daddy. Itís always a
pleasure to sit down with you.