Mark Sunday January 29th, 2012 on your calendars, folks. This may just be the most boring day in the history of baseball. I exaggerate of course, but it is an extraordinarily slow news day for those of us who have to write about the daily goings on in Major League Baseball. I’ve been sitting in front of my computer screen staring at my Tweet Deck page for over almost two hours, begging the baseball gods to give me one morsel of interesting material to blather on endlessly about.
It appears as though it’s not to be.
Regardless, here’s a list of some things that can loosely be described as news for your reading pleasure:
The OriLOLes have talked internally about the possibility of bringing Casey Kotchman to Baltimore in what would be a very OriLOLes-type move. A quick glance at their depth chart suggests that another 1B/DH-type is probably the last thing they need what with Chris Davis, Mark Reynolds, Wilson Betemit, Josh Bell and Joe Mahoney already on the roster. Kotchman had a very good year in Tampa last season, posting a .306/.378/.422 slash line and .351 wOBA, but the market for him has been cold so far this winter. That likely has to do with his career 97 wRC+ and the fact that the Seattle Mariners non-tendered him after 2010 when he had a dismal .270 wOBA in 125 games. The soon-to-be 29-year-old Kotchman also had a .335 BABIP in 2011, compared to a .280 career mark. Something tells me regression is in the cards.
45-year-old knuckleballer Tim Wakefield is “considering retirement.” The once very effective Wakefield has said he’d like to play in 2012, but the market for him seems to be completely dry. Wakefield has been rendered pretty much ineffective over the past two seasons posting ERAs north of 5.00 both years.
Three west coast teams are apparently showing interest in free agent lefthander Hong-Chih Kuo, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. The Dodgers, who non-tendered him earlier this winter are one of the three teams. Although Kuo has incredible stuff, he would represent kind of a reclamation project for teams as he has had an astounding five elbow surgeries including two Tommy Johns.
Roy Oswalt has still not signed with the Cardinals and it appears as though a deal between the two sides was never a reality, despite what some reporters put out there. Today, we hear that Oswalt will meet with the Texas Rangers sometime tomorrow. Oswalt has maintained an interest in pitching close to his home in Mississippi, which would seem to exclude the Boston Red Sox, another major suitor for his services.
Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. says he’s happy with the Ryan Howard contract, surmising that if he had to sign him today, he would have to give him between eight and ten years. Howard’s contract extension, a five-year, $125-million monstrosity, kicks in this season. I will say that Howard is a very good baseball player. Even though he’s considered to be in his decline, he still posted a .354 wOBA and slugged 33 home runs in 2011, but he is nowhere near the hitter that Albert Pujols or Prince Fielder is, yet he’ll be making more money per year than both players for the next few years.
Hey! Safeco Field’s roof is broken! Big news!
Okay, so that’s mostly it for ‘news’, unless you want to watch Don Mattingly’s son Preston, a minor leaguer for the Yankees, throw a football around.