Since the Giants and Brian Sabean still seem to be quiet -- quiet, in this instance, being a synonym for "finished" -- I have no choice but to throw out thoughts and opinions on what the other ML teams have been doing. No choice, I tell you! None whatsoever!
- The Mets got a first baseman! Uh, but not the one they wanted. Doug Mientkiewicz will bring his good defensive skills, suddenly questionable hitting prowess, and asinine PR abilities to New York. After seeing his numbers take a huge dip in the beginning of 2004 with the Minnesota Twins, Mientkiewicz saw his offensive contribution all but disappear in his brief stint with the BoSox. In a funky twist of fate, however, he found himself with a World Series ring and catching the last out of the Series -- and keeping the ball that went along with that out. After being with the team for two months. After doing a credible Neifi impression at the plate. After Boston waited over 80 years to win the Series. Sure, Doug, keep the ball. Let there be no question that you've earned it. You know, maybe Andres Galarragga doesn't have such a bad shot to make the team after all. If Big Cat can still hit like he did for the Giants in 2003, and Mientkiewicz still looks capable of posting a .676 OPS over a full season, the Mets may actually have a decision on their hands. Go get 'em, Big Cat!
- So where did Carlos Delgado end up? Well, in South Florida, of course! Where else would a big name free agent want to sign? It wouldn't be so bad for the Mets if Delgado had signed outside of the division, but he didn't, and so now the Marlins look to have just as good of a shot as the Mets do. And now, the Marlins have the potent duo of Dos Delgados, what with the key acquisition of Wilson Delgado having Marlins fans dreaming of a 3rd World Series title in 2005. Okay, perhaps not. I do get perverse satisfaction in seeing my 12 million dollar plus per year figure for Carlos Delgado was pretty close. I'll celebrate with a glass of milk, spiked with Nesquik.
- Tops in I-wish-I-hadn't-read-this news, Lee Sinins from the Hardball Times has an article here that lists the bottom 12 in Runs Created Above Average among active players in the majors. For those who don't know, Runs Created is a metric created by Bill James to measure a players overall offensive contribution to his team. Higher numbers are better. Runs Created Above Average measures a player's contribution against the average player from that season. Of the 12 players from this list(remember, these are the BOTTOM 12 among active players), the Giants have had 8, with 3 players currently on the roster (Deivi Cruz, Omar Vizquel, and Mike Matheny), and 2 other players (Neifi Perez and Benito Santiago) having been on the team as recently as 2003. Ouch. 'Course, my beloved Royals come in 2nd with 4 players from that list of offensive ugliness. Ouch again. I'm thinking Brian Sabean doesn't put much stock in the Runs Created statistic.
- I neglected to mention the player the Mets traded to acquire Doug Mientkiewicz (spelling this dude's name multiple times just isn't the way to avoid headaches, trust me). Ahem. Ian Bladergroen. Let me repeat that. Ian Bladergroen. Is it just me, or does his name sound like Swedish for, "My bladder hurts!"? I can just see it on ESPN now -- Craig Kilborn, making his ESPN comeback, runs down the highlights of the Red Sox game where Ian...Bladergroen hits his first ML homerun. Upon making contact with the pitch, Kilborn will yell out, "Farfegnugen!"
- Brad Penny signed a one year, 5.1 million dollar deal to avoid arbitration with the Los Angeles Dodgers. No -- no wisecracks, no jokes. He'll pitch for the Dodgers in 2005, and I hope he sucks. That is all.
- The Chicago White Sox signed Japanese infielder Tadahito Iguchi to a two year, 4.95 million contract to play 2nd base in 2005 (why didn't they just make it 5 million even?). Iguchi will be the White Sox' 2nd Japanese player, joining Shingo Tahatsu in forming Dos Japanesos...oh, just forget it. Being 1/4th Japanese myself, my heart swells with pride seeing...alright, so it doesn't "swell with pride", but it IS nice to see a few more Japanese players in the bigs. If this keeps up, however, we'll start getting to the point where 3 islands (Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Japan) have more players in the majors than the U.S. itself does, which would be just a little silly, considering what a huge freaking landmass our country possesses.
Okay, I think I've run my course for the day. Being that it's my day off, I need to get busy doing absolutely nothing, otherwise the day will be wasted.