Creeping Inexorably Toward A Worthwhile Sub-Heading.
Tuesday, February 03, 2004
Bits N’ Pieces
There’s nothing going on that I feel like giving exclusive treatment to, so here’s a couple observations on another fine day for the democratic process. If you’re in a state with a primary today, stop reading this and go vote! I’ll be here when you get back. If you’ve voted already, thanks for playing. Now, on with the show.
Amazin’! - Good for Eric Karros. He signed on with the A’s yesterday for a little over $1M, and as much as I might have wished to see him spending more time with a camera in his hand than a bat, I found his enthusiasm refreshing, and my good impression was only reinforced by the full-page ad he took out in the Chicago Tribune at season’s end (if anyone has a link to this, let me know and I’ll put it up thanks to Doug for the link!). I have never met him and don’t pretend to know him, but what I saw last season made me want to root for him, so kudos to Mr. Karros for signing with a contender.
And kudos to the A’s, as well. Assuming he gets used as a right-handed caddy for Scott Hatteberg and/or Erubiel Durazo, Karros can be a valuable commodity. Both Hatteberg and Durazo have very real platoon splits, and having someone like Karros around who can spell those guys against lefties and thrive while doing it will serve the A’s in good stead. Now if only Eric Chavez could hit the southpaws…
Everybody’s Doing It - First the Cubs, and now the Marlins. Seems like everyone who gets a hold of Hee Seop Choi feels the need to get him a platoon partner. Florida signed Wil Cordero yesterday to a one-year deal, both as insurance for Choi and to provide “veteran leadership” off the bench. There’s no doubt that Cordero can hit lefties (.295/.383/.467 over the last three years), and he’s doing it on the cheap (only $600K), so in those respects he’s a good pickup. I just hope that he doesn’t take valuable development time from Choi, and that his “veteran leadership” doesn’t include classes in phone etiquette.
There’s Somethin’ Happenin’ Here… - There’s an article in today’s Chicago Tribune that has Scott Boras openly pitching Greg Maddux’s skill as a teacher of hurlers. It’s difficult to tell from the article where this came from, a source in the organization, or Boras himself, and while he is quoted in the article making pithy statements about Maddux’s professorial prowess, it’s unclear whether the statements were specific to today’s piece, or recycled from earlier interviews. In any case, it smells like a plant. There don’t seem to be any other suitors out there for the future Hall of Famer’s services, and without the leverage of other offers to get prices rising, Boras’ only alternative would be to make his case to the city at large. Hendry and Boras will be talking today or tomorrow, and the timing of this article makes me think some movement is in the offing. Ideally, the movement will include Maddux up to Chicago, and Scott Boras down a peg.
Tiger, Tiger, Burning Bright - I swear, this is the last thing I’ll write about Ivan Rodriguez for the foreseeable future. I just had to give voice to my glee. In yet another fine example of why you should be careful what you wish for, Pudge wished for $10M a year, and he got it. Pudge wished for a four-year contract, and he got that too. But just like the Genie who takes your wish to be loved by everyone and grants it by turning you into an Oscar Meyer Weiner, Scott Boras gave I-Rod exactly what he asked for but threw in a delicious twist. Now, sentenced to the baseball equivalent of four years in Siberia in a gold-brick house, Pudge will have the time to contemplate the value of victory, and hope that his one ring keeps him warm at night.