Here’s some reading material for a quiet holiday weekend Sunday morning
-Tremendous Yankee video retrospective covering everything from 1903 to 2008. About 8 1/2 minutes long, and worth every second. It’s incredible just how many great moments this franchise has had. (h/t to Zell’s Pinstripe Blog for the link)
-Typically good, funny, smart piece from Sports Illustrated’s Joe Posnanski (aka the other Joe P). The LVP awards (Least Valuable Players) discussing players and managers.
-Good MLBTR piece on draft pick compensation, which got me thinking about offering Johnny Damon arbitration.
Would you offer it to Johnny Damon? Boras rarely accepts arbitration. He not only aggressively takes his clients to free agency but often takes them deep into January. It’s an opportunity to use Boras’ ambitious nature to your advantage. If you think there’s a 2 year deal out there for Johnny, you would offer him arbitration knowing he would decline. However, if there’s not a multi year deal out there for Johnny . . what’s the downside? Would it be so bad to have Johnny come back on a 1 year deal? That’s the Yanks preference, they’re on record saying they would like to sign him to a 1 year deal, possibly with an option. 2 years would be tops they would offer to him as a free agent. I’d rather overpay him a bit for one year than negotiate with him and wind up with a guaranteed 2nd year. I offer it arbitration to Johnny, I don’t see any big downside.
-(Facepalm) Some ideas are too batshit crazy to even begin to break down. In the newspaper biz, it’s common to take reporters without a sports background and give them a team to cover. The plus side can be a fresh take on a well worn topic. The downside can be articles like this one.
-The Red Sox 1912 World Series trophy is currently owned by a New York Real Estate broker named Robert Fraser, who’s auctioning the thing off. Don’t ask me what I would do with it.
-Hanley Ramirez to Boston? From Bill Madden’s latest column-
7. David Samson
The Florida Marlins president obviously has no shame. After finally succeeding in securing a new taxpayer-funded stadium for the Marlins in downtown Miami – supposedly enabling the Marlins to have the financial means to keep their star players – Samson demonstrated he has no intention of doing that when he refused to give his best pitcher, Josh Johnson, a four-year extension. Now it also looks as if Hanley Ramirez won’t ever see that new stadium in a Marlins uniform as the Red Sox, who let incumbent Alex Gonzalez go, are reportedly engaged in talks with Florida about reacquiring the All-Star shortstop.
What is it with Madden having all these Red Sox contacts all of a sudden? First the Halladay-to-the-Sox stuff, now this. I think Madden is carrying somebody’s water for them, and they live about 200 miles north of Yankee Stadium. Watch him get a big Red Sox-related scoop later this off season. Neither of these stories ring true to me. First, if either Ramirez or Johnson was officially available it would be a huge back page news story, not some footnote in an editorial. They’re two of the best young players in the game. Next, Hanley’s big money doesn’t kick in until 2011, he’s only due to get a 1.5 mil bump next year, whch even the Marlins can afford. These Madden stories lately all seem designed to have the same effect, and that’s to scare the Yanks into doing something.
-Happy Birthday to Mariano Rivera, who turns 40 today.
Photo courtesy of the great NoMaas.org