Before I get started here, I need to touch on a couple of things:
First, I’d like to welcome Amanda Hevener to the staff here at Deep Left Field! Her first post went up last Wednesday, and I encourage everyone to take a look at it and show her some love in the comments. I am excited to add another member to the team and look forward to hearing her opinions. Again, welcome Amanda!
Also, as everyone knows by now, the Indians lost the best player in their history last Wednesday night. He was more than just a pitcher, he is an icon in Cleveland sports history on the same level as Jim Brown. Had he not sacrificed four years in the prime of his career to defend our nation, his 266 wins would have ballooned to easily over 300, and I assume he would also be more regularly included in the discussion of the greatest pitchers of all time. He was very opinionated, sometimes to a fault, and I admit I haven’t always spoken highly of the way he handled himself. Above all, however, he was an honest man who spoke his mind, and as Ed mentioned, he did things “the right way”. Here’s to you, Bob, you will be truly missed in the baseball community.
Alright, folks, its that time of year. If you’re an Indians fan, and only remotely interested in the rest of the league, this is the season where you tune out baseball. You know the Indians aren’t going to be spending any money, so to the casual fan the winter meetings are more of a sweepstakes to see who the Yankees pay out the ass for, giving franchise money to not-so-franchise players (see: Burnett, A.J.).
When you look at the contracts given out this offseason, its obvious that some teams are in the giving spirit this holiday season. Jayson Werth getting $126 million?! Jayson Werth had never had more than 400 AB in a season before 2008, and has never had 100 RBI in a season or batted over .300. Well, if Werth is getting that much…Scott Boras is licking his lips.
The Indians will be trying to lock up Shin-Soo Choo in a long term deal before he is arbitration eligible (2011), and Werth’s deal (along with Carl Crawford’s…over $20 million per season!) is going to make Choo’s price skyrocket, especially with Boras as his agent. Not good, not good at all. We all know Larry Dolan is baseball’s version of Ebenezer Scrooge, and it may take more than a visit from three ghosts to convince him to pay Choo. Choo’s numbers don’t quite line up with those of Werth, but he is younger and, if he improves next year, could demand near the same contract.
Maybe the ghost of (Dick) Jacobs Marley can come and convince Larry Scrooge differently. Otherwise, prepare for another potential cornerstone to be dealt this season.