Chicks dig relievers . . . and so do GMs.
Blue Jays fans, it’s time to turn that sap dripping maple tree you’ve got for Jesse Crain into spoiled grapes from the Okanagan Valley. The Canadian born reliever, earlier connected to Toronto through rumours that, okay, I likely started, has signed a contract with the Chicago White Sox. The deal is for three years and will cost the White Sox around $13 million.
Three years seems to be the magic number for relievers this offseason with Crain, Matt Gurrier, Scott Downs and Joaquin Benoit all agreeing to that length of deal. Craig Calcaterra points out a tweet from Dave Cameron yesterday before word broke on Crain’s new contract. Cameron asks what other free agent relievers have signed three year deals since 2006 that the team didn’t later regret. It’s a very short list: Mariano Rivera.
Meanwhile, if the Blue Jays are interested in adding a veteran reliever this offseason, their options may be limited to Bobby Jenks, Octavio Dotel and of course Rafael Soriano (probably not going to happen), as Kerry Wood has signed or is at least close to signing a deal that would bring him back to the Chicago Cubs. It should be mentioned that Dotel was linked to the Jays earlier this week.
Speaking of reunions, Rich Harden is heading back to Oakland after signing a one year contract with the Athletics that will give him $1.5 million plus incentives. It’s expected that Harden will be given every opportunity to make the rotation, but if he doesn’t, a spot in the bullpen will be available to the fragile pitcher.
The Diamondbacks continue their busy offseason signing catcher Henry Blanco to a one year deal worth a million dollars. Arizona then signed Xavier Nady to a single year contract worth $1.75 million plus an additional million in incentives.
The very definition of a LOOGY, former Rays pitcher Randy Choate signed a two year, $2.5 million contract with the Florida Marlins as they work hard to either follow Brian Sabean’s blueprint for falling ass backwards into the World Series or attempt to spend just enough money to justify receiving luxury tax payments.
And The Rest
As if daring us to mock, Jon Heyman tweeted his Hall of Fame votes: Roberto Alomar, Barry Larkin, Don Mattingly, Jack Morris, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker and Tim Raines. I’m not quite sure in what universe anyone would think that Don Mattingly or Dave Parker are better baseball players than Jeff Bagwell, but . . . . Nope, there’s really no excuse for overlooking Bagwell, let alone Bert Blyleven.
A.J. Burnett: still happily married.
Go ahead and praise Cliff Lee for “leaving money on the table” when he signed with Philadelphia, but Roy Halladay’s selflessness deserves more applause in my mind.
Tom Verducci talks fallouts over Cliff Lee signing.
Baseball Reference crosses the line with poetry about defensive metrics.
Oh man, making up acronyms to make fun of statistics is hilarious. No, actually it isn’t, but sarcasm is.
This Joe Posnanski guy isn’t half bad at rating the best rotations of all time.
Question: How hilarious is it that Jeff Francoeur signed in Kansas City? Answer: Very.
Everybody’s friend Jonah Keri sat down and spoke with Tim Raines the other day. This is what the term “infinitely cool” is reserved for.