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The Greatest Game

Saturday, January 22, 2005

More useless infielders!!! 

All of us fans of Robinson Cano are in for a big disappointment. According to Newsday, the Yankees are getting ready to sign Rey Sanchez as their utility infielder.
"Sanchez close to signing. The Yankees and Rey Sanchez are closing in on one-year, $600,000 contract. Sanchez, 37, who played for the Yankees in 1997, replaces Enrique Wilson as the primary utilityman. Sanchez batted .246 with two home runs and 26 RBIs in 91 games for the Devil Rays last season.

In 2003, Sanchez played for the Mets and caused controversy when he reportedly was seen getting a haircut from Armando Benitez in the clubhouse during a game."
Just what we need. :(

(Though, to give credit where credit is due, he is a great fielder - career Rate2 of 111 at SS and 106 at 2B.)

(Extra side note: Sanchez has played for 9 different teams since 1997, and had two stints at KC during that time, too.)
# posted by shawn : 1/22/2005 08:59:00 AM -

Thursday, January 20, 2005

The return of Mael Rodriguez? 

If you remember way back last year, I talked about Mael Rodriguez, the Cuban fireballer who escaped Cuba. He had a prior injury which apparently scared away teams. Well, Julio Dominguez emailed me the other day to tell me this:
In case you don't know it by now, Mael threw 50 pitches forseveral scouts at the end of 2004. He reached 94 miles down 6 or 7 miles because he used to reach 100 and 101 consistently. He finally came to the US and began to train with Miguel Valdez who used to be a pitching coach in Cuba. He is going to hold try outs againthis year.
After a couple more emails, Julio emailed a reporter at cubaencuentro.com and he found this out:
Today in Miami, Mael Rodriguez is holding try outs for the Orioles. Probably, he is going to sign with them.
I'm glad to hear more about Mael. Hopefully he'll land a job somewhere and pitch up to his original expectations. When I first started this blog, I got a large percentage of my traffic from people googling "Mael Rodriguez" - I'm the #1 site on Google with that phrase. Oh yeah, Julio also threw me this tidbit:
Now there is another young (22) Cuban pitcher name Zaidel Beltran. He is in the Dominican Republic and had a very good Rookie season. He is lefty and has alot of talent.
I'll be interested to see what becomes of Zaidel. If I find anything more out, I'll definately let everyone know.
# posted by shawn : 1/20/2005 07:50:00 PM -

Byrnes for Cameron? 

I guess I just don't get it. Byrnes is younger then Cameron. And he had 19 Win Shares last year, compared to Cameron's 18. True, Cameron is a better fielder and he had a slightly off year last year. And played in a pitcher's park. But this just seems like a weird trade for Billy Beane to be making. Their Offensive/Defensive Wins Shares splits are:

Byrnes: 15/4
Cameron: 12/6

I guess Beane is figuring that Cameron will increase his OWS while his DWS will stay the same. But Byrnes is younger by 3 years. Cameron's career OPS is a bit lower, too (.780 to 796). This was Byrnes' second full season in the majors, and his numbers increased from his first year in 2003. He hit 20 HR, stole 17 bases (while getting caught only 1 time) and strikes out less than Cameron.

If someone out there has a good, solid rationale for trading Byrnes for Cameron, let me know please.
# posted by shawn : 1/20/2005 10:03:00 AM -

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Juuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuulio 

You gotta love this guy. I know I do. Back in the 80's when I was a kid I would always imitate Franco's crazy batting stance with the bat wrapped around my head. There was just something about him that I've always liked. I guess that's why I've enjoyed his continued career here in Atlanta. Now he says that he wants to play until he's 50. Good luck Julio, I'm rooting for you! He currently has a careero .300 batting average and has 2,457 hits. He wants to reach 3,000 hits for his career, which means if he plays 4 more years, he'll have to get about 140 per season or so. He only got 99 last year. Unless my math is wrong and he wants to play 5 more season, then he needs 110 per season. I don't think that he'll make it, but I'm definately rooting for him. It's a shame that he missed 1995, 1998, 1999 (1 AB), and 2000. If he didn't, he would be much closer to 3000 hits. He's been a part-time player for the Braves the past 4 years with an OPS of .824 and .818 the past couple of years. Not bad for a guy in his mid-40s.
# posted by shawn : 1/16/2005 04:15:00 PM -

Whither to, Carlos Delgado? 

The last top level free agent (until it's decided that Magglio is healthy) is probably going to sign with a team sometime this week. From all that I've been reading, it's down to the Mets, the Marlins, and perhaps the Orioles. Well, perhaps not the Orioles. Apparently, the Marlins' bid is $9M higher than the Orioles' last offer. That's a spicy meatball! And that's a lot of money. I don't think the Mets' offer is that high, but they just signed Pedro and the other Carlos, so maybe it won't take as much money, plus, the Marlins probably included a lot of deferred money like they always do in large contracts of this nature. The one thing about the Mets and Marlins is that they're both in the NL, which means no DH. I wonder if that fact will influence Carlos' decision in either direction. No one LIKES to play DH, so this might be a chance for him to play in the field every game. On the other hand, perhaps he thinks that 20 or 30 games a season as a DH isn't such a bad thing.

I like Delgado. He's consistently put up large numbers for a long period of time. Last year was a bit off, but his team really sucked, so I'd be willing to overlook those numbers a bit. The numbers were still pretty darn good. His defense is supposedly pretty bad, but last year he put up a 108 Rate2, which is excellent, but it is way off his career 97 Rate2. Still, 97 isn't horrible - it's just a bit below average. For a bat like he has, it's definately worth it.

Carlos Delgado fun fact: he played 2 games as catcher in the 1993 and 1994 seasons. And he played in 58 games as LF in the 1994 and 1995 seasons.
# posted by shawn : 1/16/2005 09:51:00 AM -