Sunday, January 28, 2007

What the Hell...ton?

Ok, so the Globe's Nick Cafardo is floating trade talks with the Rockies (initiated by the Rockies). The Rockies are seeking what looks like Hansen for Helton (and they will pay a big portion of Helton's contract). Why wouldn't you do this? Hansen more than likely won't make the big league roster (at least to start the year), and he isn't going to be the closer (even late in the year). The Sox lineup would be devastating.

Also, you could then try to move Lowell and move Youk back to third.

Think of the lineup:

Lugo
Youk
Ortiz
Manny
Drew
Helton
Varitek
Crisp
Pedroia

Of course, Helton's power numbers are way down, but he'd be your number 6 hitter and you'd be getting him for an unproven pitcher.

The down side is that your defense in the infield really isn't very good (minus Helton). Youk is a downgrade at third from Lowell, Lugo (anyone) is a downgrade from Gonzalez, and Pedroia (well, we haven't seen much of him)...

Anyway, I doubt (*seriously doubt) that this is much more than Cafardo trying to stir something up during a very quiet on the baseball front month. But it is cool to think about...sort of...

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Virtual Waiting Room My ASS

It's 12 minutes into ticket sales and despite my best attempts to try multiple tabs and windows I can't seem to crack the systems. (More in the comments)

Friday, January 26, 2007

This is why I hate local radio...


Schilling for Senate 2008?! Why do we give air time to stupid morons? Oh, that's right every once in a blue moon they say something provocative.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

More proof of crazy contracts

Willie Randolph was given a three year extension for $5.65 MM. That works out to an average annual value of $1.8. Or as the members of the media who love Willie and his always available sound bits, about what a middle reliever makes. Which is a really stupid comparison. Because then I could say "hey he is way overpaid - Ryan Howard won the MVP last year and Willie will get 3 times more than him.

But I digress. In keeping with managers (apples to apples), Randolph will be the 6th highest paid manager. He will trail only the following - with some numbers next to each.

Torre 25/4
Pinella 18/1
Cox 25/1
LaRussa 29/2
Scioscia 7/1
Leyland 14/1

The first number is the number of years as a manager and the second is WS trophies. And Willie would be a 2 and a ZERO. You could even add WS appearances and with the exception of Pinella and Scioscia they would all add at least one more. Now I know that Randolph "gets" NY. And he brought them from 71 wins to 97 and a trip to the LCS. But really that is the result of Mr. Wilpon opening his wallet Pedro and Beltran in 05, Delgado and Wagner in 06) the fortunate emergence of Reyes and Wright. It will be interesting to see if he makes it to the end of the contract. I would bet NO.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

OMFG



Okay, so reading the headlines each day we now all know how insane this year's FA market is. But seeing all the new contracts in one place really made my head splode. Total value of all the contracts: over 1.6 billion dollars. Seriously, how high can payrolls get before baseball starts bleeding money? This can't last.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Utley

Normally, I'm not a big fan of "locking up" your young players (long) before their arbitration or FA. Like what the Mets did with Reyes and Wright. Those guys were so far away from FA and the Mets controlled their contracts for something like four more years. Why guarantee the money? And they really did not buy out any of the FA years. Sure they have cost certainty, but the downside risk seems to great. But that is just me.

At first I thought the Utley deal made some sense, well as much sense as any 7 year deal. It probably is very backloaded, which of course is always nice for the current GM (like Riccardi did with the Wells and Overbay deals). But at least they are buying out 4 years of FA. But then I looked at the math a bit more.

He was a 3 year player - with three years of arbitration before FA. So you figure 2MM this year, 4MM in 08 and 8MM in 09. So what they did was not arbitrate the next three years and sign a 4 year $70MM FA contract? $17MM/year for him? Maybe I don't like that one so much. Unless they think the market is continue to go up and up.

I thought Gillick was a smart man.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Two thoughts....

With Sammy Sosa signing with Rangers, we should all take a deep breath and be thankful (I suppose), for this brings thoughts of what might have been. Not a lot of people remember that Sammy had signed with the Red Sox before the 1995 season when the owners imposed their own "new" rules on free agency, reducing it from 6 years to 4 years and making Sosa a FA. However the union and MLB soon reached a new agreement and Sosa went back to CHI and immediately began a run of 8 years where he AVERAGED 50 HRs. Who knows how a few of those Sox playoff teams would have fared with Nomar, Mo, Pedro and Sammy. They probably never had enough pitching, but it would have been interesting. But even worse, we would have found ourselves more firmly entrenched in the Steroid saga.

Is Trot Nixon freaking out that he does not have a job next year? For a guy that seems to love competition, I would think the thought of playing in Pittsburgh, Washington or Baltimore would probably bum him out more than the fact that his salary is likely to go from $8MM to about $500,000 - $1MM.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Boring

Ok, yesterday was annoying...Today is boring.

I feel that it is my duty as an avid baseball fan to say that this past month has bored me to tears. Nothing has happened in baseball (even the HOF stuff) that is worthy of much discussion. Seriously, go check out some of the RedSox.com articles...An intriguing interview with Mike Lowell saying that Manny is a great hitter with ridiculous numbers. Another fascinating article about how the catchers struggled last year and will "try" to be better this year. And yet another captivating piece on Julio Lugo and Pedroia and how they are ready to rock.

Wow, it is just so quiet out there. Hell, even on my cell phone when I surf to sports, MLB is all the way down to #7! I think I saw water polo listed above it.

The good news? Only a few weeks until pitchers and catchers report...I am actually looking forward to watching some of the spring training games since a lot of young guys have a legit shot at playing time this year...

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Annoying

Two things are annoying me this morning, and one way more than the other...

One...The JD Drew deal...The Sox are paying him a lot of money to come in here and bat fifth. I am looking forward to that providing he is healthy. But this has been dragging on for quite a while now. Both sides are saying that "legalese" is holding up the final contract. Medical language and legal language combined can be tough to wade through, I understand that...However, there must be some serious nitpicking on both sides for this to drag on and on and on. The Sox must have serious doubts as to the durability of Drew and they are looking to financially protect themselves. Great move. Except that, perhaps, while protecting themselves financially they may hurt the team on the field. If Drew's shoulder puts him to the DL a few times, this severely thins the lineup. Sure, the Sox aren't on the hook to pay him during those times (possibly), or his salary is severely reduced during those times (more likely), the product on the field suffers. How are fans not supposed to doubt Drew's potential durability when the FO is willing to go months after the signing without the formal announcement because they are trying to craft language to protect themselves?

Second...Pat Fans...Seriously, they are such "homers", I can't take it. I know...they win and win...The team should get respect (and they do)...Is there anyone really thinking that they aren't going to the Super Bowl this year? But, many players and reporters saw the Pats taunting fans and mimicking the (ridiculous) Merriman sack dance on the Chargers logo. I know Merriman is silly, but if the Chargers were dancing on the Patriot and Brady or Dillon or Brown got in the face of a Charger, he'd be a hero looking out for the Pats' respect. Here, LT is a cry-baby. Yes, LT made comments afterward about Belicheck being classless, but it stemmed from the players dancing on the logo.

I don't know...to Pats fans, the team does NOTHING wrong. In discussing last year's playoff loss to Denver (with two Pats fans here)...the Pats gave the game away...Denver did not cause turnovers or make opportune moments count. The Pats gave it away.

When comparing it to McCree fumbling the game winning INT this week (and the Pats recovering it), it was the Pats doing what the Pats always do. Finding ways to win...

Sorry, had to vent...Drives me nuts...

By the way, despite the fact the Sox won ONE WS (for which I will always be greatful), Sox fans are acting the same way lately. Except us...Which is why I like posting here...

Monday, January 15, 2007

PSA

I'll save you the time as one of my co-workers was nice enough to forward to me. Fuck Da Eagles.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Great news

Dante Bichette got 3 HOF votes!

(As always, sucks about Jim Rice, but next year's class is pretty weak. I imagine he, plus Dawson and Gossage, will finally make it in then.)

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Predictions

Okay, so we have settled on the Sox lineup for next year, save maybe a tweak here or there of spots 6-7 (Tek and Lowell). So I figured it might be fun to throw up some predictions. Along the line of the prior discussion on Loretta, I think the offense will be improved, despite some concerns about the bottom of the order.

But I really think the Sox are a much improved offensive team. You take Gonzalez' anemic bat and replace it with Lugo, replace Nixon WMP and Hinskie's ABs with (hopefully a healthy) Drew, you have a healthy Crisp for the whole year instead of starting Kapler in a bunch of games, and Manny should play more than 133 games. The hard part this year will be getting WMP at bats (hopefully, since everyone will be healthy). So I figure the team is good for 875 runs or about 5.5 per game. Which last year would have been second in MLB. And that is what it will be this year - second in MBL. Third at worst - maybe CLE or CHI will have their players put it all together, but barring a serious injury I think the Sox are likely to be second. How will they get there.

So in the comments I will put my guess of performance by player.

May 28...

...Keith Foulke in Fenway, in an Indians uniform. I really hope the reception he gets is good. His 2005 season was atrocious (on and off the field), and 2006 wasn't much to write home about, but that 2004 postseason - holy crap. Some of the best moments of that month were with him on the mound, and not many pitchers (certainly none of the Sox relievers from the prevous five years) could've done what he did. Would be nice to see him have a great 2007.

(Sorry to bump the Loretta discussion. You can continue it here if you like.)

Thursday, January 04, 2007

The Balls were Juiced

Man I couldn't resist, this story won't get much play but it's certainly interesting (in that conspiracy theory kind of way). Apparently, there are a couple of Penn State Drs. (unclear if they are medical or PhDs) that claim they have scanned the balls from the 1998 season (including McGwire's 70th) and have evidence that synthetic material was used to enhance their performance.

I can't take credit for finding this on my own, the good people at deadspin helped me out.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Big Unit...More Like Big Pooh-nit

Oh yeah...I went there.

Is Randy Johnson seriously considering leaving the NY Yankees to go back to Arizona? I know he lives in Arizona, but does he does he want to end his career by having people think that he wanted out of NY and the AL because he couldn't hack it anymore? That seems a bit strange.

He certainly hasn't made the transition very well, but I would think that he wouldn't take the first opportunity to get out, unless he feels that he doesn't have a chance to win there (which would mean that he must think there are flaws with the team).

Overall, I can see the Yankees wanting to trade him...But why would Arizona really want him back? Is he going to help them win a championship? The D-Backs, apparently, are willing to give up minor leaguers for him. You'd have to think that the Yankees would want quality minor leaguers, if that is all they were getting in return. Why would the D-Backs give up quality minor leaguers to get Randy Johnson back? Because they can't get Schilling? Seriously, this seems to be a very backwards move for Arizona, and one that I can't get my head around. Let's not forget the fact that RJ had back surgery this offseason. If he's not healed from that two things result...First, he isn't ready to open the season. Second, he can't throw his slider. Without the slider, he is very hittable.

Part of me doesn't believe any of the reports out there. Why? Because the Yankees would be looking to unload Randy Johnson to go out and get Clemens. Is that an upgrade? Absolutely. But how do they know they could get Clemens for sure? That's a pretty big gamble. If they don't get Clemens, and give up Johnson, their rotation is now:

Pettitte
Wang
Mussina
Pavano
??? (probably one of the kids)

That rotation kind of sucks. I don't see the Yankees making this move unless they have a guarantee from Clemens...And we all know how that goes...he wouldn't guarantee anything this early. Of course, throw Clemens into that rotation, and the Yankees are in pretty good shape with pitching. Sort of...