Wednesday, December 29, 2004
Jose Canseco has now sold much of his memorabilia on Ebay, including his MVP plaque and a World Series ring. His 1988 A's World Series ring is currently for sale for $32,000 on his website, josecanseco.com. Fans, media, and all of baseball are laughing at him; I am saddened to see a player that came up to the big leagues as a 5-tool, hall of fame bound player become a circus act. He was an awesome player before the juice; He should have quit when that ball hit him in the head for a homerun. -Nomarfan1997
IN A NEW YORK MULLET
IN A NEW YORK MULLET
Originally uploaded by nomarfan2004.
ALL BUSINESS ON THE TRADE FRONT, 2005 WORLD SERIES PARTY IN THE BACK OF YANKEES' MINDS
At least 3 Yanks for Arizona's Johnson
Tuesday, December 28, 2004
THE SOURCE SAYS WALKER IS GREEN WITH ENVY
The Atlanta Hawks are dangling former Celtic Antoine Walker as trade bait, and the Celtics are interested.
"We'd love to have him," said a team official. "The Eastern Conference is wide open and Antoine could put a team over the top."
The Celtics traded Walker and Tony Delk to the Dallas Mavericks Nov. 10, 2003, for Raef LaFrentz, Chris Mills, Jiri Welsch and the Mavericks' 2004 first-round draft pick, which the Celtics used to select guard Delonte West.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers and director of basketball operations Danny Ainge want Walker, said the source. Walker was upset when he was traded, but would welcome a return to Boston. "Antoine would be on a bus tonight. He'd walk here," said the source. Boston has a chance to make the playoffs. Atlanta (5-20) has virtually none.
It was Ainge who traded Walker, who averaged 20.8 points in his seven years with the Celtics. "Ainge would love to have him back," said the source.
But, as usual, the problem is money. Walker is making $14.6 and in order to offset a contract like that the Celtics would have to deal players with contracts who approximate that figure. The 76ers, said the source, are "desperate to get Walker." Philly coach Jim O'Brien coached Walker when both were with the Celtics. The Pacers, without suspended star Ron Artest, are interested in Walker too.
"Atlanta's holding the trump card. They're going to deal (Walker) by Feb. 20," said the source.
WIGGLE MY WAY HOME???/SOX TAX
The rumored Antoine Walker-to-Boston trade doesn't make much sense. Walker ripped Danny Ainge after he was traded from Boston to Dallas, and Ainge has never been a fan of Walker's game. The only reason the Celtics would take Walker back is for the cap relief he would provide after this season. But the Hawks don't want to take back bad contracts, so who do the Celtics send to the Hawks to get Walker? Either the media is running with this story or the Celtics are trying to drive up the price of a trade, knowing the 76ers are interested in acquiring 'Toine. Expect Walker to be wearing a new uniform by the trading deadline -- but not one that reads "Celtics".
If Antoine has actually been humbled by being traded twice in a span of 12 months and would embrace Doc's team concept (Read: No more ill advised 3 pointers without teammates set up under the basket), as well as a non-max. contract, then a return would pay huge benefits to both Walker and the Celtics.
Antoine needs to decide whether he wants to continue to be a gunner, and a loser, or a complementary, albeit a key, player, and a winner. 'Toine has the fast break and passing skills to fit in perfectly with the run-n-gun Celtics. -Nomarfan1997
I'M THE TAX MAN
Sox Pay $3.1 Million in luxury tax for 2004
Red Sox owners vow not to pay any more taxes in the future, so this explains why Theo continues to peddle Manny for chumps
The Yankees posted the highest regular payroll at a record $187.9 million, up $18 million from 2003. The Sox ranked second at $130.4 million, ahead of the Angels ($115.6 million), Mets ($103.2 million), Dodgers ($101.7 million), Cubs ($100.7 million), Phillies ($97.4 million), and Cardinals ($92.8 million).
Monday, December 27, 2004
Red Sox GM Theo Epstein wants to get out from under Manny Ramirez's contract and have greater roster flexibility. And while the issue appears dead -- J.D. Drew signed with the Dodgers and the Mets appear to have shifted their focus to Beltran -- there's no reason to doubt that Epstein won't seek other situations in which he could unload Ramirez. That could include revisiting the Mets, if they don't get Beltran and resist the urge to settle for a sliding Sammy Sosa. -- Boston Globe 12/27/04
Delgado would make at least $12 million a year, and the Sox are already approaching last year's budget(approximately $135 million), which, due to luxury tax implications, they have vowed not to surpass in 2005. the Sox will have to move even more salary than the $7 million they would save by moving their 2 current first basemen for prospects. If the Sox sign Delgado, then Manny's days in a Red Sox uniform are likely numbered.
Essentially, the deal ends up being Manny, Mientkiewicz, and Millar for Delgado, Cliff Floyd, prospects, $5 million in savings for 2005 (Mets are slated to receive $2 million annually for the length of Manny's deal), and payroll flexibility beyond next season.
In winning the World Series in 2004, then dismantling the World Champions before ringing in 2005, The Sox have made their feelings clear: "sentimentality is for suckers". Bill James will crunch the numbers, the scouts will fill out their scouting reports, and Theo and the Trio will pull the trigger on any cooly calculated deal that suits their needs. Look, they traded Nomar and won the whole thing. There's no looking back now. If they can beat the Mets to Delgado, then these deals likely become more than just trade exploration. Boston Globe "Bostonian of the Year 2004" Theo Epstein will gladly make this deal, because it makes the Sox better for 2005 and beyond.
STAR-TEK: "CAPTAIN'S LOG"
FIRST SOX CAPTAIN SINCE RICE
Thursday, December 23, 2004
$10 Million a season for 4 years. Boras didn't get the no-trade clause, but incentives could still make a trade cost prohibitive.
Wednesday, December 22, 2004
M-M-MILLER AND THE ECK
"WADE 'TILL YOU GET A LOOK AT THIS GUY"
NICE FIT FOR THE RED SOX : Miller signs 1 year, $1.5 mill deal +$3-4 mill incentives
IF Healthy, Miller a solid #2; 2005 staff deeper than
2004 World Series Champs
HUB SOURCES TELL US THAT THE SOX EYE MILLER FOR THE ROTATION, ECKSTEIN AS A "SUPER SUB" or 2nd BASEMAN.
NEW YORK -- The 41 players who became free agents Monday when their teams did not offer 2005 contracts:
AMERICAN LEAGUEANAHEIM (1) -- David Eckstein, SS.
BOSTON (3) -- Lenny DiNardo, LHP; Sandy Martinez, C; Billy Traber, LHP.
CLEVELAND (2) -- Mariano Gomez, LHP; Josh Phelps, 1B.
CHICAGO (4) -- Ben Davis, C; Ryan Meaux, LHP; Scott Schoeneweis, LHP; Eduardo Villacis, RHP.
DETROIT (1) -- Eric Munson, INF.
KANSAS CITY (1) -- Miguel Asencio, RHP.
SEATTLE (2) -- Rett Johnson, RHP; Luis Ugueto, INF.
TORONTO (1) -- Kevin Frederick, RHP.
NATIONAL LEAGUEARIZONA (2) -- Brandon Medders, RHP; Shane Nance, LHP.
ATLANTA (2) -- Mark De Rosa, INF; Mike Hessman, INF.
CINCINNATI (3) -- D.J. Mattox, RHP; Phil Norton, LHP; John Riedling, RHP.
FLORIDA (2) -- Franklyn Gracesqui, LHP; Matt Perisho, LHP.
HOUSTON (1) -- Wade Miller, RHP.
LOS ANGELES (3) -- Alex Cora, INF; Scott Stewart, LHP; Tom Wilson, C.
MILWAUKEE (1) -- Chris Saenz, RHP.
NEW YORK (2) -- Orber Moreno, RHP; Scott Strickland, RHP.
PHILADELPHIA (5) -- Lou Collier, INF; Geoff Geary, RHP; Michel Hernandez, C; Jorge Padilla, OF; Amaury Telemaco, RHP.
ST. LOUIS (1) -- So Taguchi, OF.
SAN DIEGO (1) -- Brian Sweeney, RHP.
SAN FRANCISCO (3) -- Wayne Franklin, LHP; Dustan Mohr, OF; Cody Ransom, INF.
Tuesday, December 21, 2004
BRADY NEVER BLED-SOE MUCH
Brady has been struggling with his decision-making of late, culminating in an embarrasing loss to the hapless Dolphins. Tom needs to get back to the low risk, ball control style that has made him the most valuable quarterback in football over the past 3 seasons.
O.C. signs with "L.A." for 4 years, $32 million
By Scout.com Date: Dec 18, 2004
A megadeal that would have put Manny Ramirez in a Mets uniform was nearly complete, Newsday reported Sunday, but the trade collapsed when GM Omar Minaya asked for additional money.
Rumors of Ramirez heading to the Mets in a swap that would have shipped Cliff Floyd to Fenway Park in exchange for the World Series MVP made the rounds during the MLB Winter Meetings last weekend in Anaheim, Calif., and appear to have been more than just hot stove fluff.
According to the newspaper, Red Sox brass appeared confident they were coming close to completing the deal, but were stunned at the last minute when Minaya decided he needed an additional $12 million to close the trade.
That spoiled an opportunity for the Red Sox to acquire J.D. Drew, Newsday reported, because Boston was only planning on forking over $2 million to unload Ramirez's contract.
Monday, December 20, 2004
Larry Bird's Not Walking Through That Door...
THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO HMMM...PAUL PIERCE ABSENT FROM THE HOLIDAY AD.
UNHAPPY PIERCE LIKELY AINGE TRADE BAIT
The skinnyThe Boston Celtics' new owners, led by Wyc Grousbeck, paid a record $360 million for the franchise at the end of 2002, taking on $180 million of debt in the process. To justify what he paid for the team and fund a beefed up marketing program, Grousbeck has pushed up the price of 90% of the team's club seats an average of 55%, to $140. But given that Jeremy Jacobs, owner of the Boston Bruins, controls the FleetCenter, Grousbeck's upside is limited.
1-Yr Value Chg. *1
Ann. Value Chg.*2
Revenues and operating income are for 2003-04 season.
1Value of team based on current arena deal (unless new arena is pending) without deduction for debt (other than arena debt).
2Current team value compared with latest transaction price.
3Includes arena debt.
4Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.
5Includes benefits and bonuses.
6Includes club seats.
7Compares the number of wins per player payroll relative to the rest of the NBA. Postseason wins count twice as much as regular season wins. A score of 120 means that the team achieved 20% more victories per dollar of payroll compared with the league average.
NA: Not applicable.
Wycliffe Grousbeck http://www.bostonceltics.com
Team Value1 $ 334 mil (#9)
The Boston Celtics are owned by Wycliffe Grousbeck,who bought them in 2002 for $360 mil.
Player-costs-to-win ratio *7 84
2003 Coach Jim O'Brien
The messy personal meltdown is compounded by the popular CBS4 personality's on-air behavior which, in recent months, has ranged from distracted to somewhat incoherent. And friends of Lobel privately have expressed concern he's having trouble coping with the fallout.
``I know that I have hurt others and I am truly sorry,'' Lobel said in a statement through his agent. ``But this is a private matter between me and my family.''
Sources say Lobel's problems began more than a year ago when things started getting rocky for him and his wife of more than 12 years. Consequently, the 61-year-old sportscaster started an affair with a 40-something woman he met in a Financial District bar.
New England Sports Hub sources tell us that the love interest works at a prestigious law firm in Boston. Names will be protected in the interest of class.
Karma is a bitch; this guy turned on players such as Nomar and Pedro in a blink of an eye, presenting internet rumor as fact if it served his purpose. I guess this gives new meeting to the phrase "Who's your daddy". -Nomarfan
Friday, December 17, 2004
JUST A LITTLE BIT (of a double standard)
B. SOX FAN 12/16/04: "He's the best player on the market at his position. He's worth outbidding the other teams for. I believe him when he says that he really wants to play for XXXX because he wants to win. It's all about the tradition, the fans, the atmosphere".
In both cases, it is about respect. And of course it is also literally about the Benjamins. In the fantasy world of the professional athlete, getting respect is about keeping score and getting more. What's the difference between example A and example B? Besides the obvious fact that one is a pitcher and the other is a shortstop, the answer is simple: Player A is leaving the Red Sox; player B is falling into the the open arms of the Olde Towne Team and its fans. Yes, there is a pattern hypocrisy with today's player. Yet this hypocrisy is also perpetuated by most big market baseball fans.
Think about it. This is the reality of professional sports in the new millenium. We really are just rooting for laundry...albeit, in the case of the Olde Towne Team, laundry with an aura of history and tradition. The days of Carl Yastrzemski are over. The agents and their clients are just really looking for a little..."respect". The owners and general managers are just trying to win, while keeping as much of their "self-respect" as possible. If they lose their "self-respect" to the players, they simply take more of the fans' "self-respect". If you don't believe this, you don't need to look any further than to that beloved annual rite of passage, paying Red Sox ticket price increases (on top of what is already the highest priced ticket in baseball), and this year's wonderful invention, the $10 Red Sox Nation membership card. Argh.
Maybe, rather than using the terms big market and small market teams, fans should be politically correct like the players. Henceforth, the Kansas City Royals will be known as a "Disrespectful" team, while the New York Yankees will be called a "Most Respectful" team. During this holiday season, the Red Sox owners and players can be thankful that their team resides in a "Very Respectful" Nation.
WE NEED A GRAPHIC EDITOR
MY 2 YEAR OLD CURRENTLY HOLDS THE POSITION.
BELIEVE IT OR NOT, THIS PHOTO IS ACTUALLY ALTERED.
A NEW ENGLAND SPORTS HUB-RED SOX EXCLUSIVE-PHOTOS!!! FRANCONA MEETS WITH HENRY BEFORE 2004 A.L.C.S.
Francona and "Huizenga" Henry discuss the Red Sox rotation before the 2004 A.L.C.S. versus the New York Yankees
BUTCH STEARNS WAS RIGHT!!!-PEDRO SAYS THAT ONLY "GRAB ASS" GOING ON WAS BETWEEN SCHILLING AND HIS "PERSONAL CATCHER".
Thursday, December 16, 2004
RED SOX STAT GEEK SAYS PEDRO WILL BE MISSED
All Ahead VORP 101
Ground RulesThe way to evaluate any trade is whether it makes the team better. The trouble is, defining "better".
The offensive metric of choice is VORP, Value Over Replacement Player. If you don't know what it means or how it works, you could look it up. Short version: VORP is denominated in runs, telling you how much better one player is than a hypothetical, freely available replacement. (The actual availability of such players has yet to be shown by VORP's proponents in my mind, but take it for what it's worth.)
We won't use the better metric, Win Shares, and hence, Win Shares Above Average, for now because of the expense of calculating it historically. Win Shares represents an improvement over VORP because VORP really only measures the player's offensive value (except for pitchers), but Win Shares also accounts for defensive value. Historical Win Shares are not readily available online before 2003.
One advantage VORP does have over Win Shares is that Baseball Prospectus has a system -- PECOTA -- that projects a players' value over the course of a 162-game season. This system does so over a range of probabilities, from 10th percentile (horrible, worst case, most unlikely) to 90th percentile (Best case-also unlikely). We'll be using the difference between projected VORP and actual VORP as a simple yardstick to measure a player's worth.
By VORP, Arroyo was the 29th best starting pitcher in the American League (24.7). Better than Wakefield (9.4), but not as good as Wells was in the NL (40.3).
VORP for AL starters
Johan Santana 88.8
Curt Schilling 72.9
Brad Radke 60.1
Jake Westbrook 54.4
Kelvim Escobar 53.2
Pedro Martinez 51.2
Mark Buehrle 50.8
Tim Hudson 48.6
Rodrigo Lopez 47.3
Ted Lilly 44.6
Rich Harden 41.3
Carlos Silva 40.5
C.C. Sabathia 40.2
Ryan Drese 39.8
Mike Maroth 39.2
Mark Mulder 37.2
Zack Greinke 36.4
Freddy Garcia 35.1
Barry Zito 31.5
Kenny Rogers 29.5
John Lackey 29.3
Robert Madritsch 28.0
Orlando Hernandez 27.6
Jon Lieber 27.3
Jeremy Bonderman 26.4
Kevin Brown 26.4
Roy Halladay 26.1
Jon Garland 25.2
Bronson Arroyo 24.7
Wednesday, December 15, 2004
THE EDGE GOES TO THE RED SOX
RED SOX 2004/2005 OFFSEASON "GREATEST HITS" FEATURING "THE EDGE"
"SUNDAY BLOODY SUNDAY"-Pavano chooses Pinstripes over the Olde Towne Team.
"WITH OR WITHOUT YOU"-David "Gout" Wells is in the fold; Pedro joins the Mets.
"IT'S A BEAUTIFUL DAY"-Edgar Renteria takes the cash and joins the world champion Boston Red Sox; Deal is $10 mill. annually for 4 years with a year 5 option.
"THE UNFORGETTABLE FIRE"-Sox set their sites on flamethrower A.J. Burnett; he tells family and friends that he has already discussed a longterm deal with Theo; acquisition is contingent on a Schillingesque trade-and-sign agreement. Arroyo, prospects could be part of the deal.
FOR LOVE OR MONEY??
...Martinez couldn't understand why the Red Sox were initially reluctant to give him a three-year deal when they had essentially done the same for Schilling, nearly five years his senior. The Sox had inherited the final year of Schilling's contract when they traded for him, then, as an inducement for waiving his no-trade clause, gave him two more guaranteed seasons and a vested option for a third.
For the life of him, Martinez couldn't understand why Schilling, despite his advanced years, was worthy of a longer commitment from the club. More recently, he chafed when the Sox pointed out his 2004 season featured the highest E.R.A. and opponents' batting average of his career.
So when the Mets moved to a fourth season, Martinez had his "out." In New York, Martinez again will be the staff ace, again be the pitcher around which a rotation revolves...
-Sean McAdam, PROJO(12/15/04)
LET THE BABE REST IN PEACE
It was not lost on Red Sox fans the night of Game 4 of the World Series that Renteria wore No. 3 for the Cardinals - the same number Babe Ruth wore for the Yankees - bringing a measure of closure to the so-called Curse of the Bambino.
The Red Sox appear to be collecting Ruthian talismans. Wells wore 33 as a Yankee to doubly honor Ruth, and he held a No. 30 jersey at his news conference on Tuesday. Boston's No. 3 currently belongs to infielder Pokey Reese, whom the Red Sox have offered arbitration.
-Borzi, NY TIMES (12/16/04)
Tuesday, December 14, 2004
Hudson is very much on the Red Sox radar, which is believed to be related to their pursuit of Florida right-hander A.J. Burnett. The Red Sox may wish to keep Burnett in order to plug him into their own rotation or to send him to Oakland as part of a three-way deal that would net them the coveted Hudson.-- Boston Globe
"Those that do not learn from the past are condemned to repeat it..." -Some Dead Guy
"Roger Clemens...twighlight of his career."-Dan Duquette
"We expect a 'Market Correction' "-Theo and the Trio
"The Red Sox haven't made any mistakes this offseason; they were made long before. Apparently, "Local Boy Made Hero" Theo couldn't teach the carpetbaggers the lessons learned from the Duquette regime. Don't EVER let your stars play out their contracts; Sign them, trade them, whatever maximizes the value of the asset. Baseball history has shown that there will be at least one desperate team to skew the market values of free agents. Scott Boras stakes his reputation on this premise every winter.
Now that Pedro has left Theo and the Trio holding their scrotums, the remaining options are quite unappealing:
1. Overpay a free agent pitcher such as Matt Clement.
2. Overpay a drooling GM such as Billy Beane for a frontline starter.
3. Overpay Jason Varitek and Edgar Renteria, and wait for the July trading deadline to truly address the holes in the starting rotation
Losing Pedro, Lowe, 'Tek, and Cabrera with nothing to show for it would be an unmitigated disaster, even for a team coming off of its first World Series Championship in 86 years. Under similar circumstances, Lou Gorman and Dan Duquette still would have been lynched by the local media.
This ownership is very media savvy, and will escape unscathed, at least for 2005, simply by retaining media darling Jason Varitek. Annointed by the media and ownership as the irreplaceable, core of the team,(At least until he signs with the Cardinals), It is now En Vogue for even the most superficial Sox fan to earn their Nation Card ($10 please) by reciting this undeniable truth. Please Don't bring up his numbers versus the Yankees or in the post-season. Pure Blasphemy. 'Tek will now likely get his $40-50 mill guaranteed. For a team that prides itself on crunching the numbers, the Red Sox FO will be hard pressed to justify such a committment to a soon-to-be 33 year old catcher. Jason is a fine player and leader, but his value is more in the $7-8 million a year for 3 years range.
The Sox won the World Series in 2004 with a little luck and a lot of starting pitching. Right now, it looks like both have run out on the Red Sox.
"Curt on the car phone to RJ from the Desert", "Won't you be my neighbor?" That Mullett would sure look good in a Sox uniform, in Yankee Stadium, on opening day. Not to mention October. Then again, we now have David Wells...Unless his back acts up again...or he remembers how much he hates pitching in Fenway...or he gets drunk before his start in New York...or he gets another case of the gout. How the hell does a finely tuned athlete get the gout?? Oh, yea...Calling Pete Schourek...
WELLS IS #1 Starter opening 2005
SOX FANS FINGER PITCHING AS #1 PRIORITY THIS OFFSEASON.
True #1 Curt On The Car Phone may miss the start of the season due to ankle woes.
Paydro public enemy #1 to some, Lawyer Lucchino and John "Huizenga" Henry seen as master manipulators to other fans.
Boston Globe/NY Times is the #1 equity holder in your Boston Red Sox; guess who will get the blame.
Credit to SOSH and Boston Dirt Dogs for this excellent fair balance scoop!!
Monday, December 13, 2004
Piazza for Manny makes a lot of sense; I would take a Pepperoni Piazza in exchange for Manny's bloated contract. $20 mill gets the Sox Tek and Renteria, gives them a shot at Hudson.
2004 Red Sox Free Agents Update
Player Age Status Old Team New Team Years Dollars
Terry Adams, RP 31 Free Agent
Pedro Astacio, SP 35 Free Agent
Ellis Burks, DH 40 Free Agent RETIRING
Orlando Cabrera,SS 30 Free Agent
Ricky Gutierrez, 2B 34 Free Agent
Gabe Kapler, RF 29 Signed Japan 1 $2 Million
Curtis Leskanic, RP 36 Free Agent
Derek Lowe, SP 31 Free Agent
Pedro Martinez, SP 33 Free Agent METS 4 $50 Million
Dave McCarty, 1B 35 Free Agent
Ramiro Mendoza, RP 32 Free Agent
Doug Mirabelli, C 34 Signed Boston 2 $3 Million
Bill Mueller, 3B 33 Option Picked Up Boston 1 $2.5 Million
Mike Myers, RP 35 Free Agent
Pokey Reese, SS 31 Free Agent
Jason Varitek, C 32 Free Agent
Scott Williamson, RP 28 Free Agent
Friday, December 10, 2004
...King's statement that a pitcher should not be allowed to win the MVP Award, despite voting for two pitchers last year, forces one to wonder whether he was "punishing" Pedro Martinez for embarrassing his Yankees at Yankee Stadium in September and again at Fenway Park in the 1999 ALCS...
What would make Nomar a bigger villain to Red Sox fans than playing for the Yankees? Hey George, Is it actually possible that Arn Tellem was actually using the alimighty YANKEES to drive up offers with the Cubs and Angels? Inconceiveable. No one would diss the Yanks. It is every former Sox icon's dream to slap his remaining loyal fans in the face. Suicide in this region. And as we know, Nomar does care about his legacy, and what the fans think of him. (The media is another story for another day). If true, then Lucchino must have eaten his firstborn. THE YANKEE DYNASTY IS DEAD!! Welcome back to the Fred Stanley, Dale Berra era.
"An unnamed source... a longtime friend of Nomar's"... Print it, don't check it.
``I thought that was pretty funny, he's not going to be changing any positions,'' Merloni said.
Merloni was referring to a New York Daily News story yesterday in which an unidentified friend of Garciaparra said, in part, ``He could play either (position) and he'd be happy to play either one.''
Merloni said he spoke to Garciaparra over the weekend, before Garciaparra left for a month-long vacation to Europe on Tuesday.
-Silverman, Herald, 12/4/04
Louuuuuuu, Nomar, and other hitting pros are set to put on the annual "RBI Winter Hitting Clinic" starting January 15th, 2005. www.rbiacademy.com No, we weren't paid to mention it.
-Nomar Fan 2004
TWO SIDES TO EVERY STORY-THE HUB REPORTS BOTH
Nomar Garciaparra turned down a multiyear offer from the Anaheim Angels on Tuesday to stay with the Cubs, saying he hoped to turn a one-year deal into a "long-term relationship."The veteran shortstop signed a one-year, $8 million deal with $3 million additional in incentives based on games played after Cubs general manager Jim Hendry made a visit to his Southern California home to give a final sales pitch to him and his wife, soccer star Mia Hamm. A former head coach at Creighton, Hendry still knows how to recruit, and it left an impression on the couple."It was huge," Garciaparra said. "It's not only what he has done, but the way I was treated fairly last year. It says a lot about the organization."Hendry later sealed up his double-play combination by agreeing to terms with Todd Walker, signing the left-handed-hitting second baseman to a one-year, $2.5 million deal with a mutual option for 2006. If Walker reaches a set number of plate appearances in '05, the option vests at between $2.5 and $2.7 million. If he doesn't, the Cubs hold a $2.5 million option."I feel, basically, it's a two-year deal," Walker said. "I'm going to be a starter and play well enough to get my at-bats."Just before the arbitration deadline, Hendry signed Minnesota catcher Henry Blanco to a two-year, $2.7 million deal and opted not to offer arbitration to catcher Paul Bako. Blanco, a defensive specialist who threw out 44 percent of attempted baserunners last year and finished second in the American League Gold Glove Award voting, was formerly Greg Maddux's personal catcher in Atlanta. He will earn $1.2 million in 2005 and $1.5 million in 2006.As for Walker, Texas offered two guaranteed years and slightly more money."In my gut, I was scared they were going to give me what I wanted," Walker admitted.But the Rangers rejected Walker's final demand, sealing the return to the place he wanted to be all along.The Cubs always were interested in re-signing the 31-year-old Garciaparra, though few believed he would turn down an opportunity to play near his hometown. But Garciaparra mentioned a "promise" he had made to catcher Michael Barrett when he asked to wear Barrett's No. 5. Barrett told him he wouldn't give it up unless Garciaparra was serious about coming back."I know we have a great chance of winning, and winning the whole thing," Garciaparra said.With Anaheim having the "home-field" advantage for Garciaparra, Hendry had to assure him the Cubs considered him part of their future, in spite of a one-year commitment because of injury problems that forced him to miss 81 games in '04.Garciaparra reportedly was offered a four-year, $60 million deal last winter to stay in Boston, though he steadfastly has denied turning it down. He said he was pulling for his former team in the World Series and now hopes to help the Cubs end their own championship drought, as the Red Sox did in convincing fashion."I was part of reversing something over there," Garciaparra said. "It was there for so long, and I was a part of that, and I know that. And here I am with another great organization and I want to be part of that [championship] as well."Walker's return was considered iffy because manager Dusty Baker values defense so highly. Walker is regarded average defensively, particularly on the double play. Hendry said Walker "played a lot better defense than advertised" in 2004.
Thursday, December 09, 2004
Tuesday, December 07, 2004
No specifics given, but both sides will work on an agreement
LIST OF ALL-TIME HIGHEST PAID PLAYERS
PROMINENTLY FEATURES "BALCO BOMBERS"
-Baseball looked the other way for over a decade while players pumped up their biceps and wallets through unnatural enhancement-See "Bash Brothers"-1990's
-Bud, the Union, and MLB looked the other way while Sosa and McGwire "saved" baseball and made a travesty of the record books.-1998
-Androstenedione was banned by the ICO, NBA, NFL.-pre-1998
-Canseco spoke out, and says he was blackballed from MLB.-2002
-Andro finally banned in MLB.-June, 2004
-Who is taking responsibility for the Caminiti tragedy??-2004
-The Cream has hit the fan; clearly, it is time for a change.-12/04
*Red Denotes a Usual Suspect
$122,463,215 - Barry Bonds
-Darn flaxseed oil has given me back zits and made my forehead huge!!
$115,845,000 - Greg Maddux
$115,176,216 - Kevin Brown
-Roid Rage King named as the "3rd Yankee"...
$110,501,000 - Ken Griffey, Jr.
$110,295,000 - Randy Johnson
$106,568,000 - Sammy Sosa
Shrinking Sammy Sosa 2004...
$106,010,002 - Gary Sheffield
The clear and the cream...and w'ere not talking his wife's videos...
$103,001,000 - Roger Clemens
The rumors are out there...
$100,405,001 - Mo Vaughn
He super-sized it the legal way-McDonald's
$100,027,000 - Alex Rodriguez
$ 97,696,764 - Larry Walker
$ 97,376,294 - Albert Belle (retired)
$ 94,694,000 - Pedro Martinez
$ 94,354,573 - Mike Piazza
$ 92,965,045 - Tom Glavine
$ 90,775,000 - Jeff Bagwell
From 3b Sox suspect to monster Astros Prospect...
$ 89,242,858 - Bernie Williams
$ 88,095,446 - John Smoltz
$ 86,437,500 - Juan Gonzalez
IGOR is a monster...Lives on the D.L. with tendon and muscle injuries...
$ 86,299,000 - Carlos Delgado
Converted Catcher had a huge growth spurt;funny shaped head...
$ 86,297,996 - Rafael Palmeiro
$ 86,032,727 - Manny Ramirez
$ 84,465,000 - Barry Larkin
$ 84,392,167 - Mike Mussina
$ 78,860,000 - Matt Williams (retired)
$78,014,000 - Frank (Edward) Thomas
Clean-lost out on MVP to Giambi in 2002. Has spoken out in favor of testing.
$ 77,830,000 - Derek Jeter
$ 76,700,000 - Cal Ripken, Jr. (no data available for 1981-1984)
$ 75,603,815 - Roberto Alomar
$ 74,688,354 - Mark McGwire (retired)
Nice Man Boobs Andro Boy...Need a "Bro"???
$8 MILLION GUARANTEED PLUS INCENTIVES
CHICAGO - Nomar Garciaparra enjoyed his brief stay with the Chicago Cubs so much he’s coming back.
The five-time All-Star shortstop agreed Tuesday to an $8 million, one-year contract that could rise to $11 million with performance bonuses.
“I really loved playing there, I really loved the experience I had in the short time I was there,” he said. “I just felt Chicago is the best place for me. I’m looking forward to going out there and, hopefully, turning this into a long-term relationship.”Garciaparra would make $500,000 each for 535 and 550 plate appearances. He also gets $400,000 each for making 130, 135, 140, 145 and 150 starts.(AP)http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6672739/
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Sunday, December 05, 2004
Sox could still make a move on Edgar
...Ramirez, the 20-year-old who played in Lowell for 22 games in 2002, is looked by some as the solution to the hole that may be left at shortstop if Cabrera isn't re-signed. Yet, even with his success at Double A Portland (.310 batting average in 32 games last season), the native of the Dominican Republic isn't being penciled into Boston's immediate future just yet.
"Having Hanley is an asset, and if he progress the way we think he will the next few years he will be a good major league player, hopefully with us. But we don't have the luxury in Boston to wait to two years for that to happen. That will never change," said Cherington. "But depending on how we fill the shortstop hole, and if Hanley progresses the way we think he can progress, than at that point maybe can do something with him.
"I don't think Theo is sitting there thinking, 'I've got to find a one or two year stop-gap because this is going to be our guy.' I don't think he can afford to do that," he added. "He's just got to find the best guy. If he signs someone to a short-term deal then the reaction will be that we're going to have a stop-gap solution because Hanley or somebody is going to be ready, when in fact that ended up being the best deal at the time."-Sox Farm Director Ben Cherington(Lowell Sun)
Friday, December 03, 2004
The Piss Man Cometh
BLOW UP BONDS
*BREAKING NEWS: BONDS TESTIFIES BEFORE GRAND JURY THAT HE MAY HAVE UNKNOWINGLY USED STEROIDS...SF CHRONICLE TO HAVE REPORT IN THIS MORNING'S EDITION...
Thursday, December 02, 2004
Nice Fit For Sox
The Red Sox have talked to the Diamondbacks about trading for Johnson, though a team source said he is "not necessarily our top priority." The Sox have talked to the Oakland A's about trading for Tim Hudson, though the chances are remote.-- Boston Globe
Thanks To Steroids, You Can Call Me "Lefty"
Admission calls into question "Benign Tumor" story.
And we believed you when you said that you only lost 4 pounds by "eating better".