While the Dustin Parkeses and Drew Fairservices of the world are off enjoying their weekend, I’ll be taking the reins and providing you with some content to hold you over until the big boys get back to their desks on Monday morning. Now you can get your Getting Blanked fix seven days a week. You’re welcome.
UPDATE: As it turns out, they have nothing in common with Denmark. This would roughly be why I write about baseball and not economics. Let’s all pretend that the headline actually reads, “The What the Angels Have in Common with Tonga Edition.” Shout out to Scott in the comments for pointing out the obvious.
The Los Angeles Angels have made a lot of noise this offseason, what with signing a new first baseman and a new starting pitcher, but one of the moves that is likely to fly under the radar is the one they made yesterday. The Angels have extended second baseman “This is” Howie “Do it” Kendrick for four years and a reported $33.5-million. The deal will take care of Kendrick’s final year of arbitration eligibility and his first three years of free agent eligibility.
Kendrick put up a career year in 2011, his age 27 season, hitting .285/.338/.464 with 18 home runs, a .349 wOBA and 120 wRC+. He was also one of the best fielding second-baggers in baseball last year according to the advanced metrics grading out with a +14.4 UZR at second base while also logging significant time in leftfield and at first base. He was the fifth best second baseman in baseball last year according to fWAR behind only Dustin Pedroia, Ian Kinsler, Ben Zobrist (who also played many other positions) and Brandon Phillips.
Details of the contract have not yet been finalized, but if estimates are true, Kendrick was scheduled to make around $5-million this season through arbitration which means the Angels will be paying him around $28.5-million for his first three years of free agent eligibility, or $9.5-million per year. Considering Kendrick was worth 5.8 fWAR last season, this appears to be a potentially massive bargain for Kendrick who probably could have made far more money on the open market next year with another solid season.
The Angels have now committed a minimum of $351-million to three players this offseason, or you know, the Gross Domestic Product of Tonga.
And the rest…
The Baltimore Orioles and the Toronto Blue Jays have apparently been watching Manny Ramirez swing bats and stuff [ESPN Deportes][English link from MLBTR]. This of course means nothing, but I do get uncomfortable when the Jays and OrioLOLes are mentioned in the same sentence. Stoeten over at DJF says more words about it here.
Former Blue Jays catcher Kevin Cash has announced his retirement and accepted a position as an advanced Major League scout for the Jays [Boston Globe]. Cash was a career .183/.248/.278 career hitter with 12 home runs in 714 big league plate appearances. I had the chance to quasi-meet him at a game once, he was funny.
Buster Olney reports that former Mariners closer David Aardsma has started a throwing program after undergoing Tommy John surgery last July [Twitter/ESPN]. He’s not expected to be 100% until about the All-Star break so he has not started looking for a job yet. Want to hear an awesome joke? Who’s the Pirates’ favourite pitcher? David AAAAARRRRRRRRdsma.
Okay, stop laughing.
Jon Heyman thinks that Jorge Posada should be considered for the Hall of Fame based on some rather convenient cherry-picked numbers and ludicrous comparisons to the likes of Johnny Bench and Carlton Fisk [CBSSports.com]. As I briefly discussed yesterday, Posada was a very good player, but he hardly seems like a Hall of Famer. I won’t argue that there isn’t a case to be made for him, but Heyman does not make it here.
Peter Keating of ESPN has come up with a new metric to measure Hall of Fame candidates, it’s called WAAS or wins above All-Star level [ESPN.com].
David Schoenfield details Fred McGriff’s borderline Hall of Fame career [ESPN.com].
Sticking with Hall of Fame talk (because really, what else is there to talk about?), does Bernie Williams’ post-season resume make him Hall-Worthy? [FanGraphs]
In case you weren’t already aware, the indispensable Cot’s Baseball Contracts, a site dedicated to spelling out every Major League contract in painstaking detail, has moved over to Baseball Prospectus. Congratulations are in order for Jeff Euston, the creator and operator of the site.
Speaking of BP, Kevin Goldstein looks deeper at the Anthony Rizzo trade behind a pay wall [Baseball Prospectus].
Backup infielder update: Brooks Conrad has signed a minor-league deal with the Milwaukee Brewers [Twitter/FOX Sports] and the Rays are interested in Ryan “The Riot” Theriot for some reason[Twitter/FOX Sports].
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