Hmm…The Chicago White Sox signed
the Grumpy Old Men’s favorite player…
The White Sox signed J. J. Putz to a deal today. I guess he’ll soon find out if manager Ozzie Guillen is a Grumpy Old Man. Putz will be 33 to start the 2010 season and went 1-4, 5.22 for the Mets last year (his only year in NY). He was hurt and missed about half the season. He went 10-2 with 76 saves for Seattle in 2006 and 2007.
MLB.com states that the Red Sox could be looking at Beltre. Beltre is still just 30, but is coming off an off-year where he missed about 45 games. .265-8-44, OPS+ 82. That 48 HR, 121 RBI mirage of 2004 with the Dodgers I believe won’t happen again, but Beltre could replace Lowell’s d at 3b for Boston. Beltre did win GG in 2007 and 2008 and could, with Youkilis at 1B (Youkilis can also play 3b) give the Red Sox good D at the corners. The Red Sox would then hope that Beltre goes back to .270-25-90 production.
MLB.com also states the basically obvious and what we suspected. Any Yankees getting Halladay talk begins with Joba or Hughes along with Montero. Cashman, wisely, will wait and see if the price drops. The Angels have apparently offered Joe Saunders (33 wins the past two years), SS Erick Aybar (.312 in 2009) and a minor leaguer.
St. Louis made an offer to retain Matt Holiday. The Mets supposedly made offers to Jason Bay and Bengie Molina.
Checking out the NY Post:
Hmm, can Cashman find anything there?
Yanks are looking for value…or the old “Bang for the Buck.” As the Post states, they can now draw lines in the sand for Damon, Matsui and/or a Holiday trade. Part of me wonders if one offer…the same offer…will be made to Damon and Matsui with a “whoever accepts it first” scenario. If Damon really wants more than a two-year deal, then he’s gone.
The Post states that if the Yankees are actually prioritizing another starter over LF, then it’s a bad omen for Damon. 575 hits from 3000, Damon’s agent, Scott Boras is going to try to get four years and that 3000th hit, but is there enough in the tank for that? The Yanks saw how Abreu’s salary dropped from 2007 (Yanks) to 2008 (Angels) and may be looking at JD with the same thing in mind.
The Post says that for now, Damon wants the same $13M he made in 2009 over at least the next three years. If so, nice to have had you, JD. Not at ages 36-38. No way. Joel Sherman writes that his suspicion is that the Yanks will offer a 1-year deal with an option at $10M…and I’d agree with that. Even more shocking could be the offer to Matsui that Sherman guess…1 year but at half that salary. Only $5M? I’d be more inclined to go higher for the WS MVP. Maybe not to $10M but that is one huge cut for a guy who still had 28 HR and 90 RBI.
The Post states something I mentioned recently. Joba/Hughes battle for one spot in the rotation with the loser being Mo’s setup man? In such a scenario, it seems like no matter what, the Yanks’ win.
I still hear the Cameron talk and I’m not completely sold on him, but he could make sense. The Post suggests that (and Damon and Matsui would BOTH be gone if this happened) Granderson would be in LF, Cameron in CF and Melky in RF with Swisher DHing. Cameron is a free agent. Some reasons why I’m not sold…Cameron will turn 37 next month and you already have in Granderson a guy who whiffs a lot (141, 141, 174 seasons). Cameron whiffed 156 times last year and has had eight seasons of 140 or more. Between he and Granderson, Yankee Stadium could have air conditioning in an outdoor stadium. .250-24-70 in 2009 for the Brewers. The .250 was dead on Cameron’s career average. I can see the superb defensive OF that could develop, but Cameron’s BA and whiffs scare me. The whiffs—when added to Granderson’s—really concern me.
Marlon Byrd’s name also came up in the Post. Byrd is 32 and hit .283-20-89 in 2009 for Texas. It was a career high in HR and RBI for Byrd, who actually projects out to slightly better than Melky-type numbers. (Byrd 162 g. average .279-12-69 8 SB, OPS+99; Melky (who is 25) has a 162 g. average of .269-10-65, 13 SB but an OPS+ of just 88).
Cashman has suggested Miranda in the DH role and although Miranda was decent at SWB (.290-19-82 in 122 games in 2009, .287-12-52 in 99 games in 2008) and 26 next April, you wonder. The lefty hitter is 7 for 19 in his MLB career, 1 HR but 8 strikeouts. Could he handle it, or is Cashman blowing smoke like when he said that he was comfortable with Bubba Crosby as his starting CF going into the 2006 season? You have to wonder if it’s just a Miranda Act (sorry, had to write it)…
Speaking of a Crosby and the Pirates…
no, not that Crosby, even though
he had a Pirates connection…
Bobby Crosby signed with the Buccos. He hit .223-6-29 for the A’s last year. What year was it, 2008? when Peter Gammons (who is leaving ESPN for MLB network, BTW) predicted Bobby Crosby for MVP? What a miss that was. In 2004, Crosby won the ROY despite hitting just .239 (he did have 22 HR and 64 RBI). Since then, just one year over .240, never 10 HR in a season again, and just one year over 40 RBI as injuries and lack of production have limited him to just one year with over 100 games played.
One encouraging line of reading in the Post is this: Larry Bowa, who briefly saw Yankees Rule 5 pick Jamie Hoffmann with the Dodgers this year, thinks that the Yankees pulled a heist in getting him. Nice comparison to Hunter Pence, and Pence’s numbers as a Houston OF aren’t shabby. We’ll see. As long as he is a serviceable bench player. In the Post report, Bowa predicts more than that…he thinks Hoffmann (25, righty-hitting OF) will be an everyday big league player. Once more…we’ll see. As the Post notes, if the Yanks don’t have a spot for Hoffmann, they must offer him back to Washington.
The Post also states that Cashman (as he must) kicked the tires on Ben Sheets. You wonder what Sheets (so much potential, so many disappointing injuries) could be had for after missing all of 2009.
The Royals signed Jason Kendall, who will be 36 next June. Kendall, a 3x All-Star, hit .241-2-43 for the Brewers in 2009.
Looking at MLBTR, they have a list of possible non-tenders. I can see the non-tender of Wang, but predicting the Yanks non-tender Gaudin? I kind of like the job Gaudin did. Can be #5 starter or long-man.