Shad, Some of the increases in performance we've seen from ex-Ms on new teams has to do with ballpark as well as team fit. Beltre is the shiniest example. We overpaid for a right handed pull first fly ball hitter to play in THE worst hitter's park in the league. As soon as he goes to Boston and every long fly out to left in Seattle becomes a double off the monster or Texas where the wind blows out of a warm air park with small dimensions, he looks like a hall of fame guy again. I don't buy in to a lot of the ideology theories that people like to throw around. I think it is much simpler than that. While the scouting, drafting, and trade results have gotten rave reviews at the time from people in the business, nearly all of them in the Jack Z era haven't panned out. Some of that is bad luck (see all 3 of "big 3 pitchers" hurt right now) but some of that has to be the people in place that are teaching in the minor leagues. Only 1 out of 3 pitchers drafted in the 1st round make it to have a 5 year career in the bigs. The track record across baseball is much better for batters, but not in Seattle. Smoak was a top proscpect with Texas, Montero the Yankees #1 prospect, Ackley was "guaranteed to hit", and it keep going. Something is happening in this organization that guys perform well in the minors, get promoted, look promising, but then can't hit. And I'm pretty certain that its the fact that none of them can hit big league level off-speed pitches. Minor league instruction needs to change to fix this.