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   1. karkface killah Posted: November 11, 2006 at 05:41 PM (#2235294)
Bring me the head of Kevin Orie.
   2. McCoy Posted: November 11, 2006 at 06:15 PM (#2235309)
If he wants 7 years let him walk.
   3. 1k5v3L Posted: November 11, 2006 at 06:55 PM (#2235330)
His agent says that in his discussions with other teams, the 28 year old Ramirez will seek a six or seven year deal similar to the 7yr/$119mm deal that Carlos Beltran signed two years ago.



#### Mets. First they screwed up the free agent market for pitchers by bending over for Anna Benson's strap on, now they've ruined the free agent market for hitters by satisfying Omar's fetish for Latin centerfielders.
   4. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:02 PM (#2235337)
First, considering the fact that he's a perfectly acceptable 3rd or 4th starter good for 180-200 IP of 95-105 ERA+ ball, Benson isn't that overpaid. Second, Beltran's contract is going to look like a comparative bargain after this offseason.
   5. 1k5v3L Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:05 PM (#2235340)
Well, third, I was being facetious. I do find it funny how both Soriano and Ramirez are quoting Beltran's deal as a benchmark... as if they are even in the same zip code as Beltran in terms of overall talent and production.
   6. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:10 PM (#2235344)
What would qualify as a hometown discount on 7/119? 6/100? With Kinzer representing both Ramirez and Padilla, is there any chance the Cubs could buy in bulk and get a discount as a preferred customer? Considering the opt-out clause they granted on the first deal, they must be on good terms with him.

With regard to the free agent market, I would add Derosa, Aurilia and Nomar to your list of guys who could play 3B. Akinori Iwamura is a possibility as well if Ramirez gets out of the Cubs price range.
   7. Rally Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:13 PM (#2235349)
To the extent that anyone in baseball is worth their astronomical salaries, Beltran is worth his. He's a great hitter, defender, and baserunner. The total package.

Ramirez is a fine hitter. If he had the glove of an Eric Chavez, Adrian Beltre, or Scott Rolen then he'd be equivalent to Beltran and worth that kind of deal.

But the truth is, he is not. He's a below average third baseman, and if you give him 6-7 years, by the end of that contract he'll be a 1st baseman or DH.

As a baserunner, though, he wasn't horrible, at least in 2006. He was dead average by the numbers in the 2007 Bill James Handbook.
   8. Raskolnikov Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:13 PM (#2235352)
How much do the Cubs and Hendry value Eric Patterson, their young 2Bman? I've been following the Mesa Solar Sox in the AFL, and I've fallen in love with his game. Any chance that Hendry would move him?
   9. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:15 PM (#2235354)
One thing that is interesting to consider is how the market is going to change over the next few years. What might seem to be an overpayment now might be a bargain by the end of the contract.
   10. KB JBAR (trhn) Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:16 PM (#2235355)
I don't think anyone on the current market would have to be in the same zip code as Beltran to get similar money. Hell, I suspect that if Beltran had an opt-out clause, he'd exercise it. The Mets signed Beltran during a downturn in the market.

With the internet money and a lot of teams promising $20M bumps in payroll, it's likely that most deals signed between 2002 and 2005 are going to look like bargains. Why would we see an end of the pattern of owners and GMs getting stupid each time they start making more money? The Lords of the Realm pretty much suggests that when the owners get more money, financial insanity is an inevitable result.
   11. 1k5v3L Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:20 PM (#2235359)

If he had the glove of an Eric Chavez, Adrian Beltre, or Scott Rolen then he'd be equivalent to Beltran and worth that kind of deal.


According to Michael Kay, he does have Jeter's glove, however. Which is why his fielding is terrible.
   12. TVerik - Dr. Velocity Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:29 PM (#2235366)
One thing that is interesting to consider is how the market is going to change over the next few years. What might seem to be an overpayment now might be a bargain by the end of the contract.

Or if the market goes the other way, you could have an overpaid albatross on your roster. Trying to prejudge the market is always tricky (although you can make good guesses based on supply and demand), otherwise baseball executives would get rich playing the stock market instead.

I'm amused by the constant refrain here that the market will go insane and everyone will be overpaid (and the corrollary - last year's overpayment was stealthy-smart). Sure, I think that's the most likely event, but it's far too early and too few contracts have actually been signed to make it a certainty.
   13. PJ Martinez Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:29 PM (#2235367)
"What might seem to be an overpayment now might be a bargain by the end of the contract."

I think this is true, and it makes me wonder if the Sox will actually move Manny this winter. He doesn't really seem overpaid anymore, he's on a short deal, and he remains mostly healthy and very productive. I'm not sure the Sox should move him, but, especially with JD Drew now available, I'm sure they'll see what teams are willing to offer.
   14. KB JBAR (trhn) Posted: November 11, 2006 at 07:51 PM (#2235387)
I'm amused by the constant refrain here that the market will go insane and everyone will be overpaid (and the corrollary - last year's overpayment was stealthy-smart). Sure, I think that's the most likely event, but it's far too early and too few contracts have actually been signed to make it a certainty.

You're right that it's far from certain that salaries will go up, but you'll rarely go wrong betting on substantial increases. In the free agent era, 2002-2005 and late 80's collusion were the only periods in which salaries didn't rise at an astronomical rate.
   15. Walt Davis Posted: November 11, 2006 at 08:08 PM (#2235405)
If I'm not mistaken (i.e. based on my memory of a study I read), the general long-term trend is a 10% annual increase in salaries. My unofficial eyeball of it suggested that jumps in salary lag a season or two behind big jumps in revenues ... but maybe that's not true now that Forbes has their annual list so team revenues are better known to the players. And don't forget, through the 90s, revenues rose faster than salaries (see Doug Pappas's great work before the last CBA) -- the "costs" that really exploded were the non-payroll ones.

The market correction of a few years back coincided with a couple seasons where baseball revenues did seem to genuinely stagnate. That could happen again if there's a major downturn in the US economy I suppose. When you see ballplayers start asking to be paid in Euros, you'll know things are bad. :-)

Anyway, I obviously can't disagree with Erik ... all signs point to up but none of us know for sure how this market is going to go. Right now about all we're hearing are the crazy agent numbers. I find it hard to believe that any team will be dumb enough to give Soriano 7 years and $17 M per seems unlikely to me as well. Just last year, guys like Soriano or ARAM (much less Lee) would have been doing well to get $13 M -- I seriously doubt we're looking at a 30% jump in the top FA market. Of course it only takes one bidder. And Sheffield (38, coming off injury and a mediocre season, little negotiating leverage) just got 3/$41.

The guy who's really taken a hit the last couple weeks is Lee. He was the 2nd best hitter on the market. Now with Drew and ARAM in the mix, he's #4 and I don't think will be getting a HUGE payday. It's also interesting that Lee, Soriano and ARAM (good hitters, defensively challenged though maybe not now for Soriano) are being bandied about as top players while Adam Dunn (a better hitter than any of them and cheaper for 2007 at least) is apparently not being much sought after by anybody.

It will be interesting to see if the owners return to old habits. They've now got Bud's "guidelines", they seem to have learned the lesson on really long contracts though we have seen some slippage there (Beltran, Burnett, Ryan), they seem to be keeping top players off the FA market more and they seem to have a better appreciation for younger, cheaper players. Certainly the middle of the market still seems pretty squeezed. If they learn one more lesson -- that a player isn't worth a top salary just because he's the best available on the FA market -- they'll have things in pretty good order from their perspective.

On ARAM, around mid-season or so, I thought he'd settle in around $13 M. I think I was wrong. Anyway, the only question I have about him is his defense. But among position players, ARAM, Drew and Soriano are the best on the market and if you're in the market for a 3B, 1B or DH, ARAM looks far and away the best.

As to what the Cubs do without ARAM, as someone pointed out in yesterday's thread, reportedly Ensberg and Teahen are available in trade and I'd rather have one of those instead of Huff (or Ramirez at that kind of money) ... depending on what we'd have to give up. And isn't Huff's defense so bad it will make ARAM look like Santo? And how did Huff and Piniella get along in TB?

For "entertainment" value, a Russ Branyan-Tony Batista platoon would be hard to beat. :-)
   16. Walt Davis Posted: November 11, 2006 at 08:12 PM (#2235409)
Also impacting the value of Lee was the availability of Sheffield and that trade has removed one of his more likely destinations.
   17. Astro-Bonilla Posted: November 12, 2006 at 12:03 AM (#2235493)
Using the Ramirez money and a few million more to sign J.D. Drew and Aubrey Huff would certainly be an improvement on the offense. On the other hand, if the Cubs lose out on both Ramirez and Huff, they are really screwed, at least until Scott Moore earns a call-up.

Huff part: Teahen or Ensberg would be a better solution. Ensberg is drastically underrated by the Astros; they don't understand the value of OBP. any better than the Cubs do, and his defense is outstanding, but doesn't look flashy.

I even think Aurilla on a one-two year deal > Huff on a one to two year. Wrigley favors righty power as well, which is something that must be taken into account.

Drew part: Drew has a higher VORP over the last three years than Lee or Soriano, and of course is better defensively. But, both Lee and Soriano will get bigger contracts, meaning that Drew will be the best deal of the three.

However, the Cubs don't value OBP. properly, so I doubt they will be the highest bidder for true. It would be really nice to have him in the two hole instead of one of those futility infielders.

Personally, I'd like to see the Cubs sign Drew, Aramis, (forget about Schmidt or Zito) and Dave Roberts and trade Jones while he's still coming off his best season in three years, preferably in a package for an upgrade in the middle infield.
   18. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 12, 2006 at 01:03 AM (#2235518)
As to what the Cubs do without ARAM, as someone pointed out in yesterday's thread, reportedly Ensberg and Teahen are available in trade and I'd rather have one of those instead of Huff (or Ramirez at that kind of money) ... depending on what we'd have to give up.

I agree, but should have clarified that I was only considering FAs. If the Cubs could get Ensberg or Teahen, either would be an improvement, but who knows what the Astros and Royals would want or if the Cubs can pay that price.
   19. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 12, 2006 at 01:07 AM (#2235520)
How much do the Cubs and Hendry value Eric Patterson, their young 2Bman? I've been following the Mesa Solar Sox in the AFL, and I've fallen in love with his game. Any chance that Hendry would move him?

Patterson is one of their top prospects, but I don't believe I've ever heard Hendry or the top brass use language to indicate he's untouchable (at least in the sense they've used such language to describe Pie).

Seeing that he's got Cedeno and Theriot in front of him, I think it's entirely possible that he could be traded in the offseason. The Cubs farm system isn't what it used to be and if they are going to make any deals (such as for Ensberg or Teahen), it seems that Patterson would be one of the talents that would bring value in trade.

This isn't to say I'd want to trade him, but if he could be part of a package to get a legitimately good player (rather than a washed up veteran), I'd probably support it.
   20. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 12, 2006 at 02:08 AM (#2235577)
Seeing that he's got Cedeno and Theriot in front of him, I think it's entirely possible that he could be traded in the offseason.

My man-love for Ryan Theriot has no equal (among heterosexuals), but come on, Ryan Theriot is the very picture of replacement-level. Based on the Cubs' current roster, he's probably their best choice to be the starting second baseman this year, but if Eric Patterson can't beat him out by 2008, then Patterson's not a real prospect.

I really like Aramis and would be fine with bumping his salary up to $15 - $17 million (although $17 million seems like crazy money in general), but, while he's a great hitter, he's below average at everything else. He's MUCH more valuable in the American League, because he's going to be DHing 50 - 100 times per season by the end of a five-year deal if not earlier. If it takes 5 years to keep him, I'd be really disappointed to see him go, but the Cubs would be better served by letting him go and spend the money elsewhere.
   21. Rally Posted: November 12, 2006 at 03:00 AM (#2235596)
All this talk is making 5/65 for Paul Konerko look like chump change. And I was glad last year when he rejected the Angels.
   22. greenback needs a ride, not ammo Posted: November 12, 2006 at 03:41 AM (#2235615)
All this talk is making 5/65 for Paul Konerko look like chump change.

Can we wait until Soriano or Lee actually gets a $100 million deal?

OTOH we could speculate that Beane is a genius who read the market when he gave Loaiza that contract.
   23. Walt Davis Posted: November 12, 2006 at 06:53 AM (#2235662)
OTOH we could speculate that Beane is a genius who read the market when he gave Loaiza that contract.

In isolation, there was no problem with the Loaiza contract. Following the 2004 season, league-averageish pitchers (the Benson et al bunch) were getting 3/$21.

The Loaiza contract was dumb because the A's didn't have a major need for starting pitching (Loaiza was at best a small upgrade) and the As don't have the payroll to be spending that kind of money on players they don't really need.
   24. stubbyc Posted: November 12, 2006 at 07:33 AM (#2235673)
Huff part: Teahen or Ensberg would be a better solution. Ensberg is drastically underrated by the Astros; they don't understand the value of OBP. any better than the Cubs do, and his defense is outstanding, but doesn't look flashy.

1. Hold on a second. How is Ensberg "drastically underrated" by the Astros? The Astros have done nothing with Ensberg yet. Ensberg looks like a great player if you forget the last 4 months of '06 and forget that '04 ever happened (where he went the entire first half without a homer) '06 marked the 2nd time in 3 years that he was covering up an injury for more than a small period of time as well. Maybe Ensberg will bounce back but he's getting more expensive and his performance continues to fluctuate wildly. I frankly don't know what I'd do with him if I was the Astros.

2. I can't believe you just compared the Astros front office to the Cubs front office. The Astros are one of the most successful teams in baseball over the past 10-15 years. 1 losing season in the past 15. The Cubs...well...never mind.
   25. SouthSideRyan Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:18 AM (#2235677)
Saying two front offices share a glaring weakness is not saying two front offices are equal to each other.
   26. Walt Davis Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:31 AM (#2235680)
Ensberg's career to date is not unlike Ramirez's before he joined the Cubs. Ramirez was (and still is!) much younger of course. Man, I knew Ensberg was pretty old when he came up for real, but had no idea the guy will be 31 next year. He'll probably never see the big money.
   27. stubbyc Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:44 AM (#2235681)
Saying two front offices share a glaring weakness is not saying two front offices are equal to each other.

I just find it pretty arrogant to suggest that a team who has had as much success as the Astros do not know how to properly evaluate baseball players. Astro-Bonilla does not deserve to be singled out for this kind of statement though. I think a change of scenery could be the best thing for Ensberg.
   28. stubbyc Posted: November 12, 2006 at 09:00 AM (#2235686)
Ensberg's career to date is not unlike Ramirez's before he joined the Cubs. Ramirez was (and still is!) much younger of course. Man, I knew Ensberg was pretty old when he came up for real, but had no idea the guy will be 31 next year. He'll probably never see the big money.

He's already 31 and will turn 32 in August of next year. Ensberg's career has been very frustrating at times.

In '02 he got his first real chance and didn't show much.

In '03 he started to make his mark as he got more playing time, but was still platooned with the obvoiusly inferior Geoff Blum.

In '04 he was a disaster. He started choking way up on the bat and taking a contact at all costs approach. As a result, he didn't homer until July. Only after the season Ensberg revealed that his elbow had been bothering him all year.

In '05 Russ Springer told Ensberg that he was at his best when he swung hard and didn't worry about striking out. Ensberg took that approach and had an absolutely fantastic year.

He carried that into the first part of '06. He then started to change his stance and approach every AB. His batspeed looked terrible and he couldn't catch up to any good fastball. Purpura asked him 6 weeks into his slump if he was hurt and Ensberg finally admitted that his shoulder was really bothering him. Ensberg "slugged" .335 after May this season. He still managed to work walks though, but it was hard to tell if that was only because pitchers respected his power.

IOW, Ensberg has shown in the past that he can turn it around, but there's more to his '06 season than "well he had a good OBP". His performance has been all over the place and it's hard to know what to expect this coming season.
   29. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: November 12, 2006 at 09:33 AM (#2235691)
Huff part: Teahen or Ensberg would be a better solution. Ensberg is drastically underrated by the Astros; they don't understand the value of OBP. any better than the Cubs do, and his defense is outstanding, but doesn't look flashy.

I can't believe you just compared the Astros front office to the Cubs front office. The Astros are one of the most successful teams in baseball over the past 10-15 years. 1 losing season in the past 15. The Cubs...well...never mind.

First, you don't have to tell Cubs fans that their front office has not compared favorably to the Astros, Cardinals or White Sox. We are all well aware. Second, there is considerable evidence that, much like the Cubs, the Astros have not yet jumped on the OBP bandwagon. Willy Taveras has taken 73% of his ABs in the leadoff spot the past 2 years. His OBPs batting leadoff were .321 in 2005 and .326 this past year. Craig Biggio batted 1st or 2nd in 90% of his ABs this year, with a .306 overall OBP. This leads me to believe that Lance Berkman's 136 RBI--while primarily batting 3rd and walking nearly 100 times--is likely the single most impressive offensive stat of the season.

There is reason to believe that the Astros underrate Ensberg. Though he may have been hiding an injury, Ensberg was still quite valuable over the last 4 months of the season. While his AVG and SLG fluctuated, his OBP was consistently outstanding--.391 for the first 2 months, .387 for the next 2, .411 for the final 2 months. On a team with serious OBP problems, he became a part-time player when he wasn't hitting for power. It seems to me that a lot of teams compare players using OPS, not accounting for the fact that OBP is worth more than SLG. If Player A had a .310 OBP and .490 SLG and Player B had a .400/.400 split, I think many teams would primarily see 2 guys with a .800 OPS and rate them equally valuable as hitters. Since Player B is much more valuable to a lineup, such a system would underrate Player B. It certainly seems as though the Astros are among the teams that don't give OBP as much weight as they should, and thus they underrate Ensberg.
   30. Dr. Vaux Posted: November 12, 2006 at 10:04 AM (#2235694)
and the As don't have the payroll to be spending that kind of money on players they don't really need.

They need him now, and he'd be a lot more expensive this winter.
   31. Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean Posted: November 12, 2006 at 12:24 PM (#2235702)
No one ever needs Esteban Loaiza. Esteban Loaiza is clown shoes.

What I don't get is why the existence of the internet money should result in an increase in salaries. In principle, salaries should increase because there is greater value to marginal wins, which manifests itself in increased ticket revenues, merchandising, TV/radio deals, etc.. But the internet money is divided evenly among the teams, so why should this result in an increased incentive to win (which would result in an increased incentive to get good players, which would result in increased salaries)? It's like the revenue sharing fallacy all over again.
   32. Swedish Chef Posted: November 12, 2006 at 12:36 PM (#2235704)
What I don't get is why the existence of the internet money should result in an increase in salaries. In principle, salaries should increase because there is greater value to marginal wins, which manifests itself in increased ticket revenues, merchandising, TV/radio deals, etc.. But the internet money is divided evenly among the teams, so why should this result in an increased incentive to win (which would result in an increased incentive to get good players, which would result in increased salaries)? It's like the revenue sharing fallacy all over again.

If the other teams are using the internet money to increase their salaries, a team that doesn't will lose strength and lose out on ticket sales, TV etc...
   33. 1k5v3L Posted: November 12, 2006 at 01:50 PM (#2235712)
Rosenthal: Ramirez declines to sign with Cubs

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/6161414
   34. Rally Posted: November 12, 2006 at 03:45 PM (#2235762)
But the internet money is divided evenly among the teams, so why should this result in an increased incentive to win (which would result in an increased incentive to get good players, which would result in increased salaries)?

The profit maximizing move for a lot of teams is probably to act like the Florida teams, cut payroll to the bone and live off the revenue sharing.

If teams use the extra money to try and win, that's a good thing.
   35. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 12, 2006 at 06:33 PM (#2235851)
I can see the Cubs upping the ante with Ramirez to keep him, but if it's going to take anything close to 7 years/$119 million, it's best to let him walk. If the Cubs offered him 6 years/$90 million I'd merely shrug and say, "it's their money". Anything beyond that is completely unreasonable.

He's an iffy defensive player, and he's had a tendency to toward serious lapses in his offensive performance. What can we expect from him over ages 29-33? Perhaps an average of something like 4 WARP per year, 5 optimistically. Unfortunately, there's also a lot of potential for downside performance. I can see him rapidly declining in his 30s.

What will the Cubs do without him in 2007? Well, they will probably not be very good, but I don't think 2007 held much promise anyway. Losing Ramirez simply helps force them into rebuilding mode.
   36. McCoy Posted: November 12, 2006 at 07:32 PM (#2235879)
Cubs signed Aramis for 5 years and somewhere in the 70 million dollar range
   37. Dusty's Least Favorite Base-Clogger (Roy Hobbs) Posted: November 12, 2006 at 07:39 PM (#2235882)
Shocking! I wonder if with $ figures being able to be discussed today if the Angels thought they could lowball? Maybe the market won't be skewed quite as high as people are talking?
   38. Neil M Posted: November 12, 2006 at 07:53 PM (#2235886)
Cubs signed Aramis for 5 years and somewhere in the 70 million dollar range

..with an option for a sixth year. Also Kerry Wood, a 1-year incentive-laden deal. No financial details yet. I'm reasonably happy.
   39. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: November 12, 2006 at 07:56 PM (#2235888)
If the Cubs could get Ensberg or Teahen, either would be an improvement, but who knows what the Astros and Royals would want o

God, the Tigs should totally deal an arm or two for Teahen and move Inge to SS. That would be phenomenal.
   40. Dusty's Least Favorite Base-Clogger (Roy Hobbs) Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:01 PM (#2235890)
Is Scott Moore trade bait now? Does he have any value in a trade?

Also, I wonder if ARam has another opt-out clause in this deal?
   41. Neil M Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:01 PM (#2235891)
I'm reasonably happy

I'm a liar. I'm delighted.
   42. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:04 PM (#2235894)
My man-love for Ryan Theriot has no equal (among heterosexuals), but come on, Ryan Theriot is the very picture of replacement-level. Based on the Cubs' current roster, he's probably their best choice to be the starting second baseman this year, but if Eric Patterson can't beat him out by 2008, then Patterson's not a real prospect.

Consider this --

Patterson 2006 Combined MLE: .238/.288/.344 -- age 23
Cedeno 2006: .245/.271/.339 -- age 23
   43. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:08 PM (#2235897)
   44. Dusty's Least Favorite Base-Clogger (Roy Hobbs) Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:08 PM (#2235898)
Consider this --

Patterson 2006 Combined MLE: .238/.288/.344 -- age 23
Cedeno 2006: .245/.271/.339 -- age 23
Page 1 of 1 pages


Maybe Patterson could be trade bait after a good AFL. Can Scott Moore play 2B? Down the road, he'd give the promise of a little more pop from 2B if he could. Isn't he a converted SS?
   45. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:11 PM (#2235899)
Is Scott Moore trade bait now? Does he have any value in a trade?

Also, I wonder if ARam has another opt-out clause in this deal?


From the story I linked, there is a mutual option in 2012 (year 6 of the deal).

As for Moore, I definitely think that he still has value to the team. At worst, he's a backup for the frequently hurt Ramirez (and also Lee), but perhaps he can convert to the outfield as well. He's also got some value in trade, I figure, but I'm not sure how much at this point.
   46. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 12, 2006 at 08:16 PM (#2235904)
As I said, I think Patterson is a tradeable commodity at this point. This isn't to say that I *want* to trade him, but I don't believe that his outlook is all that rosier than Ronny Cedeno's (who I still believe has potential). Seeing that the Cubs don't have a whole lot of guys with trade value, I can easily see Patterson being dealt in the offseason.

As for Moore, I don't see him being moved to 2B -- his footwork and mechanics are pretty rough at 3B as it is. My guess is that he gets some training in the outfield.
   47. Walt Davis Posted: November 13, 2006 at 06:24 AM (#2236241)
"He proved to Chicago that when you leave $20 million or $30 million on the table, it's where you want to go," Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said.

Can anyone translate this?

I'm not ecstatic and I'm still uncertain about his defensive value, but I guess I can live with 5/$73. Hell or a raise for ARAM though.

The Wood deal? I'd like to see that incentive structure. Article says he's definitely being converted to reliever. It says the incentives are based on appearances and games finished, with the latter obviously kicking in big money if they use him as closer. But the contract goes up to $6 M and I'd like to know how much of that is appearances. I'm worried that Wood could have a healthy season as a mediocre middle reliever and make $4+ M.
   48. akrasian Posted: November 13, 2006 at 06:35 AM (#2236245)
Can anyone translate this?

Hendry's convinced that some other team was prepared to pay Aramis Ramirez close to $100 million. I'm guessing the Angels, since they've said they were prepared to make big offers at the start of free agency, hopefully enough to get players to commit immediately to the Angels.

Soriano won't give a home team discount, so we'll see if they're going after him also.
   49. Harold can be a fun sponge Posted: November 13, 2006 at 06:45 AM (#2236249)
The Wood deal? I'd like to see that incentive structure. Article says he's definitely being converted to reliever. It says the incentives are based on appearances and games finished, with the latter obviously kicking in big money if they use him as closer. But the contract goes up to $6 M and I'd like to know how much of that is appearances. I'm worried that Wood could have a healthy season as a mediocre middle reliever and make $4+ M.

Well, obviously that's not something you want to do, but it's not the end of the world. When the *downside* of a deal is paying $4M+ for one year of mediocre middle relief, it's not a franchise-killer. Of course there will be a potential downside for the Cubs, but there's an upside here too.
   50. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 13, 2006 at 10:44 AM (#2236274)
Well, obviously that's not something you want to do, but it's not the end of the world. When the *downside* of a deal is paying $4M+ for one year of mediocre middle relief, it's not a franchise-killer. Of course there will be a potential downside for the Cubs, but there's an upside here too.

True, but it's all part of the Cubs' MO: blow all the available money by overpaying a bunch of mediocre to well below average talent (last year see Perez, Rusch, Mabry). If the Cubs do want to sign one of the big names, they're wasting money on #### like this. The Cubs have yet to make one crippling signing (that is open and TBD on the Ramirez contract), but by making several of these it almost has the same effect (conceding that it's easier to get rid of 1 of those guys than 1 of the huge contracts) on the "budget" at this time of year.
   51. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 14, 2006 at 05:39 PM (#2237601)
Those in the local media are generally quick to say that he isn’t, citing (a) his failure to deliver in May and June when Derrek Lee went down and/or (b) his lack of hustle in running the bases.

For more of this, see Mike Inrem's latest rant.
   52. Don Guillote (The Cheat) Posted: November 14, 2006 at 09:09 PM (#2237811)
ESPN 1000 reports Cubs sign Mark Derosa... 3yrs/$13MM.
   53. SouthSideRyan Posted: November 14, 2006 at 09:28 PM (#2237823)
Mike Imrem is a pretty nice guy, but his baseball columns are pretty terrible.

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