When you have the financial heft of the Dodgers, it is important to flex that might at every opportunity. Sign the number one free agent of the off-season and your high-priced Korean import at essentially the same time. Drive you payroll into the $200 million strata as the ink dries on your lucrative TV deal just to underscore the new reality.
When it comes time to fill out the ever-important scrap, hustle, and grit section of your roster, you get the best. Don’t half-ass it for some pretender to the utility player throne. You go out and acquire Skip Schumaker, the best hustling white guy there ever was.
It isn’t that Skip Schumaker plays like the best utility guy in all of baseball, it is simply understood that among the “gets his uniform dirty” set -Skip’s jersey is always the dirtiest. His locker full of the widest assortment of gloves. His intangibles the least tangible. His ongoing presence on the Cardinals was so bemoaned — and his departure so celebrated — by the long division and mother’s basement types that he MUST have been doing something right. Despite those bigoted claims, the Dodgers have a decent second base platoon and serviceable backups for many positions between Skip, Nick Punto, and Mark Ellis.
Actually, that isn’t true at all. Skip Schumaker hasn’t done much of anything right in a long time. He hasn’t slugged over .400 since 2008 or ranked as an above-average offensive performer since 2009. It was at that time Skip embraced his fate as a utility man, accepting a move from slap-hitting outfielder to horribly miscast second baseman. The Cardinals were desperate to keep his bat in the lineup after a decent 2008 campaign, a decision we could charitably describe as one that yielded “diminishing returns.”
Jake Lemmerman is a nice get for Skip Schumaker. Not a sure thing butcould see athletic middle INF contribute in MLB #cardinalsscouting
— Marc Hulet (@marchulet) December 12, 2012