Any time a move is made during the off-season, the same question gets brought up: how does this improve the team for the following season?  The entire off-season is full of this sort of analysis of the following year, usually consisting of a comparison between the team from the end of the previous season, and the projected roster for the beginning of the next season.  In this analysis, there is one flaw that I notice: the idea that teams maintain the same performance from year to year.

The Pittsburgh Pirates finished with a 57-105 record in 2010.  In order to get to just a .500 record, they need to add 24 additional wins in 2011.  That's a seemingly impossible turnaround for any team, and the teams that make that sort of turnaround (the 2008 Tampa Bay Rays, the 1991 Atlanta Braves, to n...

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