Archive for the ‘Joe Nathan’ Category

Texas Rangers Photo Day

The Detroit Tigers made two moves in the last two days with very different goals. First, they traded a very good pitcher for what looks like a very minimal return – a utility player and a nice prospect in exchange for one of the, what, 20 starters in baseball over the last three years?

Doug Fister is really good but was about to get more expensive and they have more than their share of fine starters so fine: you deal from a position of strength, Dombrowski. You do it with the internet’s blessing. Everybody has bills to pay, we get it.

But then the Tigers turned around and gave dollars and years to Joe Nathan, a closer. A capital-C Proven Closer who also happens to be 39-years old. All the Tigers goodwill quickly evaporates because CLOSERS NOT CLOSERS. Overpaying for saves is the Cardinal Sin, one from which even the wiliest GMs cannot recover.

But, as always, there is a middle ground between screaming about saves and improving a professional baseball team. The pendulum of overrated/properly rated swings violently. The Tigers added a great pitcher to the bullpen – a definite area of need. This is a good thing for their chances in the immediate future.

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Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo shagging fly balls at Rangers Ballpark In Arlington? Nope. It’s Texas Rangers closer Joe Nathan, the lose of a rather humorous bet between himself, a New York Giants fan, and bullpen mate Mike Adams, a die hard Dallas Cowboys supporter.

The story comes to us by way of the Yahoo! Sports NFL blog Shutdown Corner. Editor Doug Farrar informs us of what led up to the uniform and equipment switch.

As the loser, Nathan had to show up at Tuesday’s game between the Rangers and the Cleveland Indians at the Ballpark at Arlington (all too near Dallas for Nathan’s taste) in full Tony Romo regalia, complete with helmet, pads, and the Romo jersey. Nathan was so confident that his Giants would win, he added the kicker — if he lost, he’d have to wear the uni through batting practice, and sign autographs for five minutes in Cowboys gear. Cowboys equipment manager Mike McCord was happy to help.

Well, at least now, if Nathan, who has been one of the league’s most reliable pitchers this season in high leverage situations, was to suddenly fall apart down the stretch, we’ll know why.