Sunday, March 08, 2009

We have moved!

Hey Guys n Gals.

We have moved and relaunched our baseball musings for the 2009 season. If you are interested in reading what we have to say then please go over to our new home at Down to the Final Strike.

Our new home will still be concentrating on what is going on with the Yanks and the Sox but it will also have lots of general baseball chatter as well as a good healthy sprinkling of fantasy baseball chat and both of us are huge fantasy guys.

I hope you have enjoyed the blog over the past four years (well to be honest - mostly 2005-2007) but now I'm free of my contractual obligations elsewhere I can return to blogging. I hope you come over to our new home and enjoy reading what we have to say.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Beaten to the punch

One of the reasons I have been blogging less is that by the time I get home, read my daily selection of blogs for most teams in the league, most things I have wanted to say, have been said.

But some times, I want to say something so badly, I don't care that someone has beaten me to the punch...
We want to like young players, right? Sometimes they don't make it easy for us, though. Jonathan Papelbon, who seems like a pleasant enough fellow, has now joined the chorus of young players whining about being paid hundreds of thousands of dollars. I know it's unfair to expect these guys to know how lucky they are, compared to coal miners and teachers and ditch diggers and shoe cobblers. But at the very least, Papelbon and Prince Fielder and Cole Hamels might look at their peers in the other professional sports and realize just how good they've got things. They'll enjoy longer careers and will, after serving their six-year apprenticeships, enjoy almost complete freedom. Oh, and after retiring they'll never have to work another day in their lives.
The above is taken from Rob Neyer's Monday Mendozas (sadly behind the Insider curtain).

When I read Prince Fielder's quote...
"my time is going to come. It's going to come quick too"
I screamed (silently), and grumbled like the old man I am becoming, and muttered to myself that I should blog about this because it drives me crazy...

When I read Cole Hammels quote...
"It's about respect, and when people don't show that to you, you're caught off guard. I thought it was a low blow"
The low blow in question was a $500,000, 1 year deal. Again, I screamed (not so silently), and grumbled... oh ok you get the picture.

But then when the Red Sox own character closer joined the rising chorus, I could resist no longer...
“Asked what would be a fair salary for this year, Papelbon had his answer ready.

“Ryan Howard got $900,000 in his third year,” said Papelbon. “There it is. It’s staring (the Red Sox) right in the face.”
So Papelbon, now used on a restricted basis because his shoulder wasn't able to stand up to regular usage in his first full year in the majors believes that Ryan Howard's 3rd year in the majors is a comparable benchmark? Well that is something we can test...

Using the Hardball Times as my source, let's just compare the win shares...

2007 Papelbon 12
2007 Howard 26

2006 Papelbon 18
2006 Howard 31

So, Howard was renewed at $900,000 having produced 31 win shares in 2006...

So actually, I agree with our dainty dancer, renew him at the same rate as Howard - at $29,032 per win share... or an annual salary of $522,000. The good news for Papelbon is that Howard's 26 WS were rewarded in arbitration with $10,000,000 or $384,615 per WS, so that would suggest a salary of $4,615,000 in a year.

Papelbon has shown himself to be money centric from the moment he came up - and it appears a WS win has done nothing to change his outlook on life.

Now players are clearly entitled to look out for themselves - his arm could fall off and he would be in trouble... but equally he could sign a 6 year deal, and have his arm fall off... would he volunteer to repay his salary at that point?

Sunday, February 24, 2008

A slow news Sunday

Two interesting news stories for the Sox on Sunday.

Firstly, Terry gets his contract... as much coverage as you need can be found here, here and here - no details of what he is being paid, but the honest truth is, what does it matter? Presumably the Sox ownership team think their manager is worth whatever they have coughed up, presumably money assigned to pay the on-field management team is never affecting whether or not we can afford to sign any player - whatever level they are at.

And then the second story of the day - this one...

A former Cy Young winner signs up with the Sox - I think most Sox fans would have rather had this former Cy Young award winner, but this is a nice interesting insurance policy. I can't imagine we will be getting much from him, but as an insurance policy to allow Clay to be effective in September and October... good job Theo!

Friday, February 08, 2008

What a difference a day (or two) make!

Does this count as news?

In 2003, we would be in full, full scale panic at this point.

But now, we can get excited about the prospect of some kid who has achieved so very little taking the mound every 5th day or so...

Who says two world championships in four years don't make a difference!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Neil M chiming in

As my colleague hinted at the other day, I am now working professionally as a writer. I am the man who has been charged with launching and growing the Network - a group of around 50 sports websites. I however will return to the blog to keep jotting down my thoughts on the Yankees and Red Sox (amongst other MLB related issues) throughout the season.

There is a baseball site on the network - Talk Baseball which is still being built. I have just commissioned work for pages about all the clubs in MLB - and I have done the New York Yankees page myself.

If anyone has any ideas or thoughts then please pass them on to me. Otherwise I shall try to follow my colleagues excellent recent blogging record and return to my old ways.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Overpaying as a strategy

Well the Mets got their man... a 7 year, $150m + contract will do that it seems.

3 years ago, the Mets overpaid for Pedro , which was justified by the Mets organization because Pedro made the Mets "serious" to other free agents in the market... the Mets seem to believe that it worked - I seem to remember that Beltran made noises that Pedro helped sway his mind (although he only came out with that after his agent was rumored to have offered the Yankees a discount) and I think Delgado made similar noises, although after a .258 / .333 / .448 line in 2007 for $14.5m, maybe the Mets would rather he hadn't.

So 4 years later - I think the Mets have overpaid again.

They traded away four prospects to obtain the opportunity to pay Santana as much as he would have gotten in the free market, and included a signing bonus to make sure he doesn't feel underpaid this year. The only argument against this is that he might have gotten marginally more in free agency next year - which is a maybe, if he had a fully healthy, no question mark year in 2008, but don't the Mets prospects outweigh that additional $x a year?

Will over-paying in 2008 have a better outcome than in 2005?

Thursday, January 31, 2008

If he was a politician...

Rob Neyer's opponents would be using today's blogging output against him in attack ads by now!

Not surprisingly, Rob blogged quite a bit about the Santana trade today (sadly, all links take you behind the Iron Curtain... sorry the Insider fence).

In his first post today, Rob said:
I like what Baron Von Awesome said about the (pending) trade sending Johan Santana to the Mets for a quartet of prospects ...

"The Twins just nailed their own coffin shut today. They're doomed to irrelevance for the next five years, at least. This is the worst baseball trade I've seen since... I don't know. Kearns and Lopez for a bunch of relievers, I guess, but even then, Kearns and Lopez turned out not to be much to worry about. The Astros trading Dan Wheeler for Ty Wigginton and then releasing Morgan Ensberg comes to mind, but there wasn't nearly as much at stake; the Astros were already doomed to suck for the rest of the decade.

This trade is horrible."

I agree.

So just to summarize... the trade is horrible, Rob agrees - seems fair, I happen to agree as well!

So it was a bit surprising to read later in the day...

Don't be too quick to judge Twins

Didn't we do the judging already?