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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
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5) discussing politics
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Reconcilable Differences
2008-12-10 19:55
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Look, no one seems to enjoy a salary arbitration hearing. From afar, it appears to be some bastardized form of marriage counseling, where you air out all your grievances with your partner before coming to a reluctant agreement or, barring that, a third-party-imposed winner-take-all settlement.

That doesn't mean divorce is a preferred alternative. But reading Diamond Leung of the Press Enterprise and Tony Jackson of the Daily News, you might get the feeling that the Dodgers do.

The Dodgers own the Major League Baseball rights to Takashi Saito. If he wants to play ball in the majors next season, he does so at their pleasure. Otherwise, it's home to Japan - which might be fine for the 38 5/6-year-old reliever who was only able to throw 5 2/3 innings after the 2008 All-Star Break.

According to Leung and Jackson, the Dodgers and Saito are so far apart in their negotiations for 2009 that general manager Ned Colletti is labeling the talks "a staredown." The Dodgers are offering an incentive-laden one-year contract, Saito wants more security. The beat writers are indicating (assuming they haven't been led down the wrong path) that if the parties don't come to an agreement by Friday, the Dodgers will release the rights to Saito rather than face an arbitration hearing.

Why? Unless they are convinced Saito won't be healthy at all for 2009, why should they not continue negotiating with him, even if it takes them all the way to an arbitration hearing? Is this an overreaction to the Jason Schmidt fiasco?

In the first half of 2008, opponents only had a .282 on-base percentage and .299 slugging percentage against Saito. He struck out more than 30 percent of the batters he faced. I'm the first guy to point out that reliever expiration dates come up fast, but I'm struggling to believe that Saito won't be worth to the Dodgers something close to what an arbitrator decides he's worth, even if he spends more time on the disabled list.

The Dodgers are always advocating the need for pitching depth, yet since October they've cast aside Brad Penny, Joe Beimel, Chan Ho Park. I'm not arguing that they should have kept all of these guys, but unless Saito is just fried, surely the team that took a $47 million chance on Schmidt can take a sub-$4 million chance on him.

Update: Dylan Hernandez of the Times echoes his colleagues: "The Dodgers might part ways with the All-Star closer if they can't agree on terms of a new contract to ensure they can avoid facing him in arbitration." The Dodgers should not worry about ensuring they don't face Saito in arbitration.

Update 2: Andruw Jones hits ... the Dominican tarmac (via Kevin Baxter at the Times).

Update 3: Ken Gurnick of MLB.com adds medical details on Saito:

The issue is his right elbow. He suffered a partial tear of a ligament that usually requires Tommy John ligament replacement surgery and a year off. But at age 38, Saito instead chose an experimental stem-cell injection and two months of rehabilitation. He returned to pitch six times in September and had a shaky playoff outing in Chicago but wasn't healthy enough to be included on the Dodgers' National League Championship Series roster.

So he ended the season physically unable to perform, and for negotiation purposes, that's how the club remembers him. He's back home in Japan now and the Dodgers have medical reports as far as they go, but there's no way to really know his health until he pitches regularly in games. ...

I'll admit, this gives me second thoughts.

Comments (185)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2008-12-10 20:02:49
1.   Tripon
http://tinyurl.com/GiantsGM

Giants GM Seabean goes on a rant about the C.C. sweepstakes.

2008-12-10 20:04:30
2.   Andrew Shimmin
Maybe Vizquel could be a relief pitcher AND a backup catcher.
2008-12-10 20:05:20
3.   trainwreck
Just proves McCourt is broke. ; )
2008-12-10 20:06:28
4.   Eric Stephen
1
Isn't it great when a Tiny URL suffix you choose hasn't already been taken? :)
2008-12-10 20:17:54
5.   Disabled List
One of my friends who works for MLB just got laid off. He told me they whacked 45 people this week.

It never was easy to see teams spend hundreds of millions of dollars on players, but it's even tougher to watch this now.

2008-12-10 20:22:30
6.   MJW101
If Saito's health is an issue the Dodgers could offer him a two year contract with options. The stipulation being that he gets tommy john surgery, if is necessary, and the team will pay him $1M in 2009 while he rehabs. Upon successful rehabilitation the team pays him $2M (including incentives) in 2010 with a team option in 2011 for $3M with a $500k buyout.

If Saito comes back and pitches well in 2010 then the team gets a quality reliever for $3.5M for one year or $6M for 2 years.

This would give Saito some of the security he is seeking while allowing the team to get one or possibly two productive years out of a Dodger hero.

2008-12-10 20:25:20
7.   Eric Stephen
That 3-team trade is done, per MLB:

Mariners Get
Aaron Heilman (from NY)
Endy Chavez (from NY)
Mike Carp (from NY)
Franklin Gutierrez (from Cle)

Mets Get
J.J. Putz (from Sea)
Sean Green (from Sea; sorry LAT!)
Jeremy Reed (from Sea)

Indians Get
Luis Valbuena (from Sea)
Joe Smith (from NY)

http://tinyurl.com/6gm24t

2008-12-10 20:27:02
8.   trainwreck
I have no idea about the guys the Indians are getting. Are they good prospects?
2008-12-10 20:27:23
9.   Eric Stephen
6
That offer is probably considerably lower than the Dodgers' offer, already deemed too low by Saito.
2008-12-10 20:29:15
10.   Eric Stephen
8
I don't know anything about them, but Valbuena was deemed by BA to have the best strike zone discipline in the Mariners' farm system.
2008-12-10 20:31:09
11.   Sam DC
If anyone plans to tivo Top Chef (it's possible!), it runs over 15 minutes tonight.

And is outstanding by the way.

For the seventh episode in a row (or thereabouts), Radhika discusses on camera how she does not want people to think she can only cook Indian food. And then proceeds to cook Indian food.

2008-12-10 20:31:11
12.   Bob Hendley
Druw looks relatively svelte and Rafi is lugging his kid around.
2008-12-10 20:31:56
13.   trainwreck
10
Makes sense the Indians would pick up a couple of nice pieces.
2008-12-10 20:33:19
14.   trainwreck
11
lol I kept pointing that out to people; but it makes sense. Nothing is going to have more flavor.
2008-12-10 20:33:41
15.   Eric Enders
At first glance it looks like the Mariners win that one as Heilman and Gutierrez are both useful parts.

J.J. Putz can't be too happy. He was arguably the best closer in baseball entering this year, and now he's the backup to the single-season record holder. In eight months his prospects for future earnings basically disappeared.

2008-12-10 20:37:22
16.   Eric Enders
"The Dodgers might part ways with the All-Star closer if they can't agree on terms of a new contract to ensure they can avoid facing him in arbitration."

Translation: The Dodgers want Saito only if they can be guaranteed that they won't have to pay him a fair salary.

2008-12-10 20:39:33
17.   Eric Stephen
11
If anyone plans to tivo Top Chef (it's possible!)

I plan to record it, then watch it a bit later! Although via Time Warner DVR, not TiVo, so your point still stands. :)

2008-12-10 20:44:55
18.   Eric Stephen
Carmelo Anthony tied an NBA record with 33 points in the 3rd quarter tonight against Minnesota.

George Gervin is the only other player in NBA history to score 33 in one quarter.

2008-12-10 20:49:27
19.   Disabled List
I don't think that's much of a trade for the Mariners. Gutierrez and Chavez aren't much, and Heilman was an absolute arsonist last year.

Jeremy Reed is pretty useless too. Maybe the Mets still need an outfielder?

2008-12-10 20:49:49
20.   underdog
Quite a trade. Not sure how to judge it at this point except I like what the Mariners did. The Mets now have a potentially very strong bullpen, though it could also potentially blow up in their faces.

As for Saito, I hope the Dodgers find a way to bring him back, and we all love him, but I can understand the hesitation, given his age and recent injuries. Hope they work something out. Let's not end it this way, Sammy!

2008-12-10 20:51:03
21.   underdog
I thought Heilman was pretty highly regarded? Am I mistaken? Last year or no... I dunno, maybe they just got a lot of spare parts. {shake magic 8 ball} ask again later.
2008-12-10 20:51:38
22.   Bob Hendley
18 - The Iceman, who perfected the 10 foot finger roll.
2008-12-10 20:57:54
23.   Disabled List
21 Heilman was pretty good from 2005-07, but he was beyond awful this year. Maybe the M's think they can get him back on track.
2008-12-10 20:58:07
24.   underdog
>>According to Yahoo's Tim Brown, the Phillies are close to signing Chan Ho Park. He says the Phils may view him as a starter. Park's average fastball velocity jumped from 88.4mph in '07 to 92.6mph in '08, leading some to label him a sleeper.<<

(via MLBTR)

Aw man! I knew CHP wasn't coming back to LA, and that's probably the right move, but would've preferred he not go over... there.

2008-12-10 20:59:08
25.   underdog
23 He was -- looking at his stats again, and the 10 homers as a reliever isn't too terrific, but, yeah, I'm assuming they think he's still got something of the old self in him.
2008-12-10 20:59:22
26.   trainwreck
Chan Ho is going to give up so many home runs in that park.
2008-12-10 21:00:56
27.   underdog
Ooooo! Lakers and Suns are on ESPN, didn't realize. LA up by 8.
2008-12-10 21:04:56
28.   whodat807
Chan Ho in Citizens Field will be an absolute disaster. Did the man learn nothing from his time in Texas?
2008-12-10 21:06:24
29.   El Lay Dave
The Yanks play the Phils in interleague so C.C. can get his shot at Chan Ho again, but only as a PH since those games will be in NY.
2008-12-10 21:09:11
30.   Marty
26 Yours is the perfect screen name for the Chan Ho in Philly experiment
2008-12-10 21:10:07
31.   El Lay Dave
Philadelphia is actually the only place where Chan Ho has appeared and not allowed a HR! In 32 2/3 IP, 9 at the new stadium.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/pi/psplit.cgi?n1=parkch01&year=00#locat-site

2008-12-10 21:11:05
32.   Disabled List
The Lakers won't win the NBA title this year. Not with this defense.
2008-12-10 21:18:38
33.   underdog
I really don't get what's happened to the Lakers D. They are not the same team I watched a few times, a couple of weeks ago. They look so sluggish over the past week. Maybe it's time for shock bracelets on their ankles, shocked every time they dog it on defense.
2008-12-10 21:19:10
34.   underdog
Well at least there's Ariza.
2008-12-10 21:21:45
35.   underdog
So Geoff Baker says: Mariners got three additional minor leaguers from the Mets: pitcher Maikel Cleto, outfielder Ezequiel Carrera, and pitcher Jason Vargas. Anyone know anything about them? Might have gotten more in this trade than we initially thought.
2008-12-10 21:25:38
36.   Eric Stephen
35
Vargas tasted some big league action a few years back with the Marlins. He also went to high school with my nephew, who proclaimed Vargas an unlikeable tool.
2008-12-10 21:29:06
37.   fritts
The Mariners got two great defensive outfielders, too bad their both below average hitters. An outfield of Endy, Ichiro and Gutierrez would definitely have the best range in the majors.
2008-12-10 21:32:31
38.   underdog
36 Heh. Then he should've stayed with the Mets.
2008-12-10 21:46:04
39.   John Hale
As I have heard so much about outfield defense being so undervalued it should be fun to compare next years Mariners defense with the version that included Ibanez, Reed, Balentien aside Ichiro.
My data point reflecting baseball economics. Reupped my Mariner season seats today and was able to pick seats one section closer in the field box section to just off the visitor dugout. Of course this is for a team coming off a historically bad year but was the biggest upgrade in five years. One of the perks of living in Seattle and not LA is being able to afford tickets like this.
2008-12-10 21:48:58
40.   kinbote
I think www.ussmariner.com is crashed!
2008-12-10 22:14:18
41.   KG16
I don't know much about baseball's arbitration process, but if it's anything like arbitration in the legal world, it sucks. Almost as much as trial, which it pretty much is. you present evidence, the trier of fact/law weighs the evidence and renders a decision. at least in the legal world, you can appeal the arbitrator's decision - can't do that in baseball.
2008-12-10 22:21:42
42.   Gagne55
"surely the team that took a $47 million chance on Schmidt can take a sub-$4 million chance on him"

Two wrongs make a right?

2008-12-10 22:23:46
43.   Jon Weisman
41 - Yes, it sucks. Does it suck as bad as getting rid of a player who could help you?
2008-12-10 22:26:44
44.   Eric Stephen
41
Plus, in MLB the arbitration is an either/or scenario, in that the arbitrator must choose one side. Correct me if I'm wrong, but in the legal world can't many arbitration cases be solved via some sort of resolution in the middle?
2008-12-10 22:33:59
45.   LAT
I will keep an open mind re: Saito until we know how sound his arm is.
2008-12-10 22:41:09
46.   Jon Weisman
Medical update on Saito above.
2008-12-10 22:46:38
47.   LAT
Its not quite a NPUT but for once I am ahead of the curve instead of behind it.

Ned may be stupid but at least he's not an idiot. He appears to have learned from the Schmidt mistake.

2008-12-10 22:49:43
48.   Marty
Sayonara
2008-12-10 22:51:34
49.   Eric Stephen
I think Saito opted for the stem-cell injection so he could build a 2nd Shakey's Pizza.

With the medical update above, I'm leaning more towards the Jack Woltz response to Saito.

2008-12-10 22:54:59
50.   Eric Stephen
The decision to non-tender Saito doesn't have to come until Friday (the deadline to tender contracts for 2009 to those under team control). Coincidentally, the Dodgers found it's always better to fire people on a Friday. Studies have statistically shown that there's less chance of an incident if you do it at the end of the week.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2008-12-10 22:58:49
51.   trainwreck
49
As soon as I saw the update I was ready to put a South Park reference, but you beat me to it.

Breaking my balls, Stephen.

2008-12-10 23:16:04
52.   trainwreck
I was very pleased with the ending of Top Chef.
2008-12-10 23:30:13
53.   Icaros
If I inject stem cells into my brain, will I become smarter?
2008-12-10 23:31:54
54.   trainwreck
You might just get a tumor.

"It's not a tumor!!"

2008-12-11 00:16:49
55.   LogikReader
First of all, forget the Finals, I don't think the Lakers are making it out of the first round at this rate. What a joke this team is on defense.

Here's a tidbit from the Putz trade article:

Gutierrez had been in the Indians' system since he was acquired in the 2004 trade that sent Milton Bradley to the Dodgers. The 25-year-old has put up a .258 average with 22 homers and 85 RBIs over the last four seasons and has proven to be a valuable defender.

How many A-Level prospects do the Indians have of ours? We can't even blame it on Ned this time. Gutierrez for Bradley pre-dates NedCo.

2008-12-11 00:21:06
56.   Bob Timmermann
54
Are you referring to this book?

http://www.worldcat.org/oclc/33901803

2008-12-11 00:24:01
57.   trainwreck
56
I do not think Arnold Schwarzenegger (from Kindergarten Cop) could write that book.
2008-12-11 00:25:27
58.   trainwreck
55
They made it to the Finals with a worse team.
2008-12-11 00:27:40
59.   Louis in SF
3

More and more I am also buying into this theory. Does anyone know how long Fox gets to keep the cable revenue from the Dodgers. I believe as part of the contract and the various debts that the Dodgers still have to Fox that they keep a large percentage of the cable revenue. So while the Dodgers are a large market team and profitable, much of the growing cable revenue stream goes back to Fox. If advertising rates fall than that cable revenue also falls and doesn't the debt grow. Hence why McCourt is also trying to find other revenue streams that are not incumbered by the Fox deal.

It would be great one day to see some of the loans that McCourt has and the revenue generated.

2008-12-11 01:43:24
60.   El Lay Dave
59 It was reported here:
http://articles.latimes.com/2004/jan/30/sports/sp-dodtv30
amongst other places that Fox would retain the Dodgers local broadcast rights through 2012, so the McCourts don't get to enjoy that revenue stream until the 2013 season.
2008-12-11 01:51:53
61.   El Lay Dave
How predictable would a Saito arbitration hearing be? He has some great statistics, somewhat approaching Papelbon's, but he is a first-time arb-eligible going into his age 39 season. Who are his comps? It would appear this is a unique situation in a lot of aspects. It does seem that arbitrators weight past performance very heavily, so it could be that the Dodgers are better off competing in an open market for Saito at his age and with his injury questions than at arbitration. Is there a competitor that is willing to risk two years and/or significant guaranteed money on him? [This may depend on how much they rely on the results of physical and their projection on insurance. ;) ]
2008-12-11 01:59:48
62.   Andrew Shimmin
Won't take a chance on a player who can draw a long contract. Won't take a chance on an injury risk. Won't take a chance on offering arbitration to a player who might accept it. At least we're guaranteed that nothing will ever go wrong, this way.

Are arbitrators too stupid to figure injury risk in to the price they set? Why does everybody in the world think Kim Ng is better at arbitration hearings than Colletti seems to?

2008-12-11 02:20:59
63.   Eric Enders
55 The Gutierrez-for-Bradley trade got the Dodgers the 2004 division title as well as the services of Andre Ethier. I'm OK with that.
2008-12-11 04:06:17
64.   PDH5204
Jon, if you see Gurnick, well, it would help if we knew just which ligament and what the grade of tear [but why trouble the reader with those critical details]. Otherwise, hard to discern whether Ken's simply serving as the Nedster's propaganda mouthpiece. The fact that no one seems able to pick up the phone and speak with Sammy doesn't otherwise add much to notions of journalistic credibility. Oh, and so you Ken know, the "experimental" likely concerned mesenchymal stem cells. All of us have 'em. The reason why we older folk don't quite heal as good or as fast is that we produce fewer and fewer mesenchymal stem cells as we age. Lastly, the Nedster claims to be only looking for "reasonable assurance". It can't be given, in any circumstance, and given the specific occupation involved here [overhead throwing motion, repeatedly], to ask for the same is absurd and preposterous. So what the Nedster really wants is for the player to bear all the risk of loss. One of these days, you, Ken, Diamond, and/or Tony will call him on it.
2008-12-11 04:58:22
65.   Eric Stephen
64
Isn't this post an example of Jon calling out the Dodgers?
2008-12-11 05:51:29
66.   still bevens
Mike Cameron for Melky Cabrera? Seriously? Must be nice to be the Yankees.
2008-12-11 06:20:36
67.   OhioBlues12
66 - Seems like a bad deal for the Brewers if they didn't get a pitcher like Kennedy.
2008-12-11 07:08:50
68.   Bob Timmermann
Arbitrators don't get to set a price. They have to choose between either the team's figure or the player's figure.
2008-12-11 07:19:21
69.   blue22
39 - I like this trade for the M's. Putz is reaching the point for me that Gagne and (now) Saito reached, where you just couldn't trust the elbow. Getting a solid, LH-bat like Carp (who will start at Tacoma most likely) hopefully means the end of the Miguel Cairo-style first base experiments. And as much hope as I had for Jeremy Reed, he had really never showed anything offensively at the big league level. I do wonder what they gain by just flipping him for similar-yet-older-and-pricier Endy Chavez. Further trade bait I hope.

But you are right, that OF of Chavez/Balentien, Gutierrez, and Ichiro should be a lot of fun to watch track down flyballs in the OF. Now if they could only do something about Betancourt in the IF...

2008-12-11 07:23:38
70.   blue22
69 - Ooh, but what could nullify this whole opinion is now sticking Morrow in the closer role without giving him a sufficient opportunity in the rotation. That's just a dumb idea; hopefully they don't go that direction.
2008-12-11 07:24:39
71.   68elcamino427
Is Sammy done?
Did he elect not to have the "Tommy John" procedure because that means it would take about 18 months to be back into something resembling peak form?
Wonder what peak form might be for Saito at 40+ years old?

Broxton's time is now!

2008-12-11 07:28:43
72.   Bob Timmermann
69
Perhaps Gary Cohen will have to yell "Jeremy Magic!" anytime Reed makes a nice catch.

The "Endy Magic!" was really played out.

2008-12-11 07:49:17
73.   JoeyP
Putz/K-Rod in the 8th/9th is the best in baseball I think.

If Billy Wagner comes back in 2010, it'll be really interesting then...

2008-12-11 07:59:55
74.   mwhite06
69 I like this trade for the Mariners too-- however the rumor yesterday was they were going to send Putz to Detroit for Matt Joyce. I'm really high on Joyce, and I think the Rays hit a homerun in getting Joyce for Edwin Jackson.
2008-12-11 08:04:19
75.   JoeyP
The Mariners better hope their new OF defense makes up for their anemic bats.

Their OF offense is probably the worst in the majors now.

2008-12-11 08:09:05
76.   Ken Noe
0 In the context of the Schmidt revelations, I don't expect Ned to sign Saito, Furcal, or anyone else with a hint of lingering health problems, unless they agree to a variety of clauses designed to protect Ned. He's not going to risk another PR hit. I wish I knew more about Saito's real condition, heaven knows I've loved the guy as a Dodger.
2008-12-11 08:11:29
77.   ToyCannon
Posters calling out the Laker defense in December and saying that can't make it out of the playoffs is beyond silly. Jackson plays 81 games to get his team ready for the playoffs.
2008-12-11 08:11:44
78.   delias man
I wish Bob knew the tie-breaker procedure for Argentine Soccer. They are heading for a 3 way tie going into the final week.
2008-12-11 08:17:29
79.   ToyCannon
Mike Cameron has had an excellent career but if I'm the Brewers I'd much rather have the possible future of Melky then the rapidly declining years of Cameron. Not many comps for Cameron that would indicate he will have any value after 2009 while Melky may or may not. Cameron will be 37 in 2010, Melky will be 26.
Without CC and Sheets it is not like the Brewers are going to be competing in 2009 for anything.
Only 14 seasons of a CF over 37 or older who compiled on OPS+ > 100 since 1947 and Willie Mays tops the list.
http://www.bb-ref.com/pi/shareit/VBsM
2008-12-11 08:18:48
80.   JoeyP
You have to question the Lakers commitment to defense when Jackson starts Luke Walton.

If you have Walton/Fisher/Gasol on the floor at the same time, the defense is not going to be good.

I'd really like to see:

Kobe
Ariza
Odom
Gasol
Bynum

As the primary 5-man unit till the trade deadline. At the deadline, deal Odom for a PG & slide Ariza to the 3-spot.

2008-12-11 08:22:05
81.   Eric Stephen
73
If Billy Wagner comes back in 2010, it'll be really interesting then...

Wagner's contract is up after 2009, and I doubt he will be back with the Mets.

2008-12-11 08:24:49
82.   natepurcell
80

Any reason why Vlad didn't play at all last night?

2008-12-11 08:27:46
83.   ToyCannon
75
Gutierrez in CF is a decent bat. I really like this deal for the Mariners. He took a while but he's just going to get better and better. Balentien offers plenty of possible power. Per USS Mariner
Ichiro, RF, +5 offense, +5 defense, +20 replacement level: +3 wins
Gutierrez, CF, -5 offense, +10 defense, +20 replacement level: +2.5 wins
Balentien, LF, -10 offense, -10 defense, +20 replacement level: +0.0 wins

Might be the best trade the Mariners have made in years. I love it anytime someone trades an overvalued closer for plenty of parts.

2008-12-11 08:30:17
84.   underdog
There's a rumored trade proposal of Eric Byrnes for Julio Lugo that just sounds really dumb to me. Byrnes becomes a 4th outfielder, Lugo becomes a starter for the DBacks. Who just signed Felipe Lopez. Again, nothing in concrete, but I was just scratching my head at that one.
2008-12-11 08:32:32
85.   underdog
Oh wait, that came from Steve Phillips. Never mind. Next!

80 I predict you'll see that starting line-up before too long. Again it's really early in the season and Phil is experimenting a bit, especially with the 19-3 record. They keep playing porous defense and he'll mix it up.

2008-12-11 08:34:36
86.   scareduck
59 - the contract is for a fixed amount, though. Fox is betting they can sell advertising for far, far more than that. In a down market, they could lose money on that deal.
2008-12-11 08:36:02
87.   scareduck
79 - agreed; the Brewers were going nowhere, needed to get cheaper and younger in center field, and will have to make some astute trades. Cabrera might yet be useful, but even if he isn't, Cameron wasn't going to be anything if he stayed.
2008-12-11 08:36:49
88.   scareduck
83 - agreed. What I'm missing is what the Indians get out of it.
2008-12-11 08:37:24
89.   underdog
Rule 5 draft today! Think the Dodgers will take a flayer on someone?
2008-12-11 08:37:28
90.   JoeyP
84- Swapping 2 bad contracts for teams that need each position.

Really looks like the D-bax are taking a step back this year. They are letting Hudson/RJ/Dunn all go, & replacing them with no one.

2008-12-11 08:42:13
91.   ToyCannon
90
At this point the Dbacks are saying the same thing. Letting Manny/Lowe/Rafy/Penny go and replacing them with no one.
2008-12-11 08:42:38
92.   Bob Timmermann
89
I really hope the Dodgers don't flay anyone.

It's illegal in all 50 states.

Even Nevada.

2008-12-11 08:43:18
93.   ToyCannon
I've seen no comments on how good Andruw Jones looks on the tarmac. Doesn't he look good?
2008-12-11 08:43:26
94.   Jacob Burch
89 For their own sake, let's hope the Dodgers don't take out the flayer on anyone.

I slept about 18 hours over a 24 hour period yesterday, feeling ill. I blame the Yankee and Red Sox dominating the headlines for this.

2008-12-11 08:44:32
95.   Bob Timmermann
78
Wouldn't it be goal difference and then goals scored?
The standings I see list San Lorenzo in first and they have they have the most goals.
2008-12-11 08:44:48
96.   ToyCannon
This country went to blanky in a handbasket when we stopped flaying and keelhauling.
2008-12-11 08:47:17
97.   El Lay Dave
90 At what position would the D-Backs "need" Lugo? They have Drew for SS, and a Lopez/Ojeda platoon for 2B now, apparently.
2008-12-11 08:49:01
98.   ToyCannon
I thought that rumor came out before they signed Lopez. A Lugo for Pierre swap makes sense if you want to swap bad contracts for position of need.
2008-12-11 08:50:39
99.   cargill06
93 Black is very slimming, once I see him in a horizontal stripped shirt than I'll comment.
2008-12-11 08:56:10
100.   El Lay Dave
I think I was just trying to say earlier that Saito's potential arbitration hearing might be quite unpredictable given it's unusual nature. One can make a reasonable guess how LA's arb-eligible youngsters will do based on historical comparables, but Saito presents some pretty unusual aspects, perhaps unprecedented.

I could see him winning a arb case, guaranteeing his salary at several million, but I can also see no team offering him a contract that doesn't include significant incentive escalators for IP or appearances because of his elbow plus his age.

His arb argument would likely be about his numbers as a closer, but his open market perception may be potential set-up guy with health questions.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2008-12-11 08:56:55
101.   delias man
95 They had a playoff 2 years ago between Estudiantes LP and Boca when tied. I do not think they go by goal differential.

The suspense is killing me. it all goes down live at El Gaucho in Redondo Beach if anyone interested at 1120 Sunday.

2008-12-11 09:01:54
102.   Bob Timmermann
101
This paragraph leads me to believe that they will have a playoff:
Ahora todo depende de las combinaciones de resultados que se den en la ultima fecha para que Boca pueda lograr el título, con la posibilidad de tener que jugar un desempate para dirimir quien sera el Campeon del Apertura 2008.
2008-12-11 09:05:40
103.   scareduck
93 - is he in a flight suit with a big "Mission Accomplished" sign behind him?
2008-12-11 09:08:18
104.   OhioBlues12
98 - I thought so too regarding a Pierre-Lugo swap. The contract values are roughly the same and if Lugo bounces back with a decent season he could be tradebale next offseason.

93 - Where are there photos of Jones?

2008-12-11 09:08:29
105.   underdog
Tee hee. Would anyone else like to comment on my previous typo before we move on to my next one,? Whatever that my be.
2008-12-11 09:08:54
106.   Louis in SF
60 86

Thanks for the info. But no cable money until 20013, for a guy who is leveraged does make me wonder about some of his decisions.....If all of the concerns about future Dodger contracts with players who have injury history, I wonder why you would consider looking at Johnson for even one year. 12 million for Andy Pettite?

2008-12-11 09:09:49
107.   delias man
102 I also think i just read about a drawing for top 2 in case of a 3 way tie. Yuck.
2008-12-11 09:10:04
108.   cargill06
Did we get Garate in the rule 5 draft?
2008-12-11 09:10:04
109.   ToyCannon
104
Update 2 above in Jon's post.
2008-12-11 09:14:35
110.   Jacob Burch
105 I don't think it was as funny as TJ's Colletti's suit, but it wasn't bad!
2008-12-11 09:16:47
111.   OhioBlues12
109 - Thanks, I missed that.

I will say that the photo is a bit encouraging. He looks pretty trim and lean which is what I was hoping he would get back to. Last season he always looked so soft especially around the midsection and thick underneath his chin.

I wonder if Pentland will be checking out any of his games in the Dominican to start working on his swing?

2008-12-11 09:18:36
112.   68elcamino427
Andruw looks like he's dropped about 20lbs.in the tarmac pic.

If Manny gets signed.
If Andruw could hit .250 with 30 homers.

Of such are Hot Stove daydreams made.

2008-12-11 09:21:42
113.   Bob Timmermann
107
Looks like a three-way playoff to me.
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gNxFjepQ0VKTpKFiP5R96797TNjg
2008-12-11 09:25:05
114.   delias man
[113} Bob is the man - triangular is the word I was looking for. Thanks for helping.
2008-12-11 09:26:38
115.   delias man
The draw looks like it is for who gets the bye to the final... we will see.
2008-12-11 09:27:11
116.   Bob Timmermann
115
With age, comes wisdom.
2008-12-11 09:29:39
117.   blue22
75 - Replacing Cairo at firstbase with a Branyan/Shelton platoon will help make up some of that offense. And Ibanez (whom Gutierrez replaces) gave back a lot of his 124 ops+ with his glove.
2008-12-11 09:32:01
118.   arborial
I also agree that Druw looks slimmer. The article lists him as the "central gardener". Doe anybody know the spanish naming conventions for various positions? I remember hearing them once from a friend and being amused. Bob, I am looking in your direction.
2008-12-11 09:34:46
119.   delias man
At least in the DR they call the OF Jardineros. Can't remember what they call it in Mexico.
2008-12-11 09:36:56
120.   Bob Timmermann
"Jardinero" is Spanish for "outfielder."

"Lanzador" is pitcher. "Receptor" is catcher.

"Torpedero" is shortstop.

You'd probably figure out the other three positions.

2008-12-11 09:37:52
121.   kinbote
The Rule 5 draft is underway! Anyone care to provide instant analysis? :)
2008-12-11 09:38:05
122.   arborial
120 you never let me down
2008-12-11 09:38:09
123.   laughingd2
Re Andruw Jones: ¿Cómo grande estaría para Andruw Jones a volverse y tiene un año del monstruo para el Dodgers? ¿Y para que él consiga Rafael Furcal para volverse? Bate las luces del día vivas fuera de Gato Wilson y de Juan Pierre, no? [Jack Wilson was translated to Gato Wilson on Babelfish and I kind of liked that, so I kept it.]
2008-12-11 09:39:17
124.   regfairfield
Bet the over on the Mariners next year.

Eduardo Morlan could become a solid reliever for anyone next year.

2008-12-11 09:43:09
125.   Sean P
112

At this point, I'd be pleased with .222 and 26 homers.

2008-12-11 09:45:06
126.   Bob Timmermann
121
If you're too cheap to pay $15 to watch 30 GMs yell out the names of fringe prospects, then I can't help you.
2008-12-11 09:45:31
127.   underdog
Ah hah! I believe there's a typo on the Griddle's Rule 5 blog entry subject header. Either that or I don't get it, which is possible.

Btw, the River Ave Blues guy is "camped out" in the Rule 5 draft war room, which probably sounds more exciting than it is. And it doesn't sound very exciting.

http://riveraveblues.com/2008/12/2008-rule-5-draft-6280/

2008-12-11 09:45:34
128.   Bob Timmermann
Sadly, I only got 33 out of 34 in this.

http://www.sporcle.com/games/ncaabowlgames.php

2008-12-11 09:46:47
129.   silverwidow
The 40-man roster is full as of right now. Does a Rule 5 guy need to be added immediately?

I know spots will open up tomorrow.

2008-12-11 09:48:10
130.   underdog
The Reds took Francisco Lizarraga, SS from the Dodgers.
Astros took Andrew Glock, OF from the Dodgers. (Uh, who??)

Dodgers take Anthony Hatch, C from the Jays.

Pirates got Donald Veal, who used to be a highly ranked prospect.

2008-12-11 09:49:05
131.   regfairfield
129 When you acquire a player, I believe you get 10 days to assign them, but I could just be making that up.
2008-12-11 09:49:37
132.   underdog
Oh, and the Brewers took IF Shane Justis from the Dodgers.
2008-12-11 09:50:27
133.   underdog
Ah, that was a typo on the Rule 5 draft chat -- Andrew Locke, of course. Glock sounds like a more dangerous player.
2008-12-11 09:50:33
134.   kinbote
130 Thanks. MLB seemed slow updating their information. Well, there's that.
2008-12-11 09:53:59
135.   kinbote
Go underdog go!
2008-12-11 09:56:17
136.   regfairfield
Anthony Hatch is a third baseman, not a catcher. He did hit .329/.438/.539 as 24 year old in half a season of high A, but he followed that with a .635 OPS in AA.
2008-12-11 09:59:32
137.   underdog
I was just looking at the live River Ave blogger's chat from the draft, just scanning for players of note. The first player, Terrell Young, could end up a good one for the Nats. Not really sure about any of the others.
2008-12-11 09:59:35
138.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
133 - When that Glock kid is on the mound, he can really fire bullets.
2008-12-11 10:00:34
139.   The Trolley Dodger
138 Hard to find anybody of his caliber.
2008-12-11 10:02:17
140.   underdog
Indeed, they mislabeled him as a catcher. Looks like those 74 games in AA is as high as he's gotten. I can't see him sticking with the Dodgers for a full season, but guess they thought he was worth giving a shot to.
2008-12-11 10:03:03
141.   Ken Noe
139 Is he still feuding with Plaxico Burris?
2008-12-11 10:04:58
142.   Ken Noe
140 They need catchers and third basemen in the system, given recent deals, that's for sure. Maybe one will surprise.
2008-12-11 10:10:23
143.   bferb
Just reported on MLBTR:

12:01pm: Kevin Towers told reporters the proposed Peavy deal with the Cubs is dead. The Cubs pulled out. Mike DiGiovanna heard earlier that the Angels remain interested.

2008-12-11 10:15:50
144.   MollyKnight
Where is the rule five draft happening?
2008-12-11 10:17:06
145.   Bob Timmermann
144
It should be in Las Vegas.

But I think it takes place in the hearts and minds of all good-hearted souls.

2008-12-11 10:17:23
146.   JoeyP
Anthony Hatch looks like a left handed hitting (right hand throwing) 3TO corner infield prospect.

6'3 195#.
He was awful in AA in 2008, but high A he did pretty well.

A real long shot to make the team.

2008-12-11 10:19:07
147.   MollyKnight
145-Oh. I meant on the Internet. :)
2008-12-11 10:20:22
148.   Bob Timmermann
147
You can pay MLB.com $15 and watch the wrapup! It should be scintillating.

Or you could take that $15 and do something useful with it. Like burn it to help decrease the money supply.

2008-12-11 10:27:33
149.   fanerman
Is anybody here an expert on dealing with eye strain, particularly in an office environment?
2008-12-11 10:28:27
150.   underdog
It happened already Molly. I'm sure the summary will be up online soon. There's also a live chat that you can replay on River Ave Blues, listing all the picks as they happened.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2008-12-11 10:32:57
151.   underdog
Here you go:
http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/prospects/?p=1829
2008-12-11 10:34:04
152.   bhsportsguy
150 In progress but it appears up to date.

http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/prospects/

Kevin Goldstein described the Rule 5 draft this way to me, a room for 300 plus people, only 7 media people show up, table and chairs set up for each team, and then the moderator calls the team's name, they answer within a few seconds and then they move on.

2008-12-11 10:35:40
153.   bhsportsguy
BTW - unless I don't understand the draft, the player the Dodger acquired is for their AAA team so he just needs to stick there. He does not have to go on the MLB 40 man roster.
2008-12-11 10:38:36
154.   Andrew Shimmin
Veal threw 18 wild pitches last year. That's something.
2008-12-11 10:39:48
155.   Kevin Lewis
149

My eye doctor told me to stop working at the computer every 30 minutes and to stare out a window for 5 minutes to change the depth of view.

2008-12-11 10:44:53
156.   old dodger fan
153
From BA
There are Triple-A and Double-A segments of the Rule 5 draft, with price tags of $12,000 and $4,000 respectively. Minor league players not protected on the reserve lists at the Double-A and Class A levels are subject to selection, but almost no future big leaguers emerge from this process. It's basically a tool for major league teams to fill out affiliates rather than obtain talent.
2008-12-11 10:48:20
157.   Jacob Burch
155 This is one of the things I figured out through serendipity--some car alarm was going off outside so I went to look, and noticed how much more refreshed I felt.

Now I do it about every day, once or twice (that or take a five minute walk and look into the distance as much as I can). Really does help.

2008-12-11 10:48:38
158.   cargill06
124 Keith Law disagree's...

Joel (B'ham, WA): Klaw, doesn't Batista have to be the closer for the M's now? He has experience and is a disaster as a starter. That way they could keep Morrow as a starter.

Keith Law: (1:44 PM ET ) Sure. They're going to lose 100 games either way; a closer is the last thing they need.

2008-12-11 10:55:47
159.   JoeyP
So when does the MLB version of the Rule V draft start?

The one where if a player is drafted, they have to stick on the team's MLB roster the whole season or they must be offered back to their original team? Have they adjusted those rules now?

2008-12-11 10:58:51
160.   bhsportsguy
159 If you look at the link above, you will see that the first round was for the MLB portion of the draft, in that draft only teams with less than 40 players on their roster can participate.
2008-12-11 11:06:33
161.   cargill06
haha

Allen (PA): Your an idiot.

Keith Law: (2:02 PM ET ) But at least I know how to use an apostrophe, you twit.

2008-12-11 11:09:56
162.   fanerman
Klaw is a great name.
2008-12-11 11:10:37
163.   ToyCannon
156
Victor Garate was picked up in the minor league Rule 5 draft. I'd bet he makes it to the major leagues. It was quite a nice pickup by us last year.
2008-12-11 11:11:50
164.   Kevin Lewis
161

Don't they have someone to filter that stuff?

2008-12-11 11:16:24
165.   Andrew Shimmin
I expect Law picks the questions he answers. And that he wanted that one.
2008-12-11 11:17:26
166.   Jacob Burch
164 Law picks what he wants to answer, so he enjoyed the chance to needle a typo.

If only underdog had sent in a question about taking flyers on the Rule 5!

2008-12-11 11:18:08
167.   The Trolley Dodger
162 164 Which suggests "Klew" for Kevin.
2008-12-11 11:20:12
168.   fanerman
155 That's definitely key. I don't do that enough.

I'm also trying to get an optimal monitor set-up. I've turned down the brightness and I have a backlight thing sort of going so there isn't a harsh contrast between the monitor and the cube wall.

I still have problems though. I feel like my eyes get dry easily and spamming eye drops into them only does so much. I'm not sure what else I could do though.

2008-12-11 11:20:44
169.   Jacob Burch
163 I'm sort of surprised he wasn't protected in 2007, especially by a team like Houston.
2008-12-11 11:21:27
170.   ToyCannon
Gotta love the Klaw gig. Once a week he chats for a few hours. Once a week he might or might not put up a column. When a trade goes down he writes about a paragraph on his take. It is no wonder he has so much time to spend on his hobbies.
2008-12-11 11:23:51
171.   ToyCannon
169
He was terrible in the A league in 2007. I understand why he was not protected, I'm just shocked it might turn out well. Houston owed us since we gave them a LOOGY for 50,000 in the major league part of the draft.
2008-12-11 11:25:31
172.   fanerman
I wonder if things are still too bright.
2008-12-11 11:25:49
173.   Jacob Burch
171 Right, but outside of those 42 innings, he's put up pretty great peripheral stats across the board, especially dominance. Just seems like he had to have had better stock than somebody in the Houston system.
2008-12-11 11:26:14
174.   bhsportsguy
171 I think Wright has a good chance to spend some time in the minors this year.
2008-12-11 11:32:37
175.   Xeifrank
168. Get good eye drops, cut down the glare on your monitor, specialized glasses for computer usage, rest, stronger eye glass prescription. Try the above. My unprofessional guess is that you need a different eye glass prescription.
vr, Xei
2008-12-11 11:35:45
176.   fanerman
175 Thanks. The thing is, I hadn't really had this problem before and I've always spent a lot of time in front of a computer. Within an hour or so my eyes start to feel strained at work, but if I'm at home and I'm staring at a computer I have no issues.

It seems like either an eye dry-ness thing (maybe the office is dry), or a brightness thing, or just a lack of distance variation for my eyes to focus on.

What would you call good eye drops? I have "Visine Tears" right now.

2008-12-11 11:43:10
177.   ToyCannon
174
Garate could end up being better then Wright. Except for the name, no one can beat Dequam Lawesley Wright
2008-12-11 11:43:35
178.   Daniel Zappala
I use TheraTears (drops) and they work great.
2008-12-11 11:44:58
179.   bhsportsguy
178 I took your team and the points against Arizona for two reasons, one, because I think they can win straight up and two, anytime I get bet against Arizona, I do so for Bob.
2008-12-11 11:45:14
180.   underdog
They make eye drops that are "natural tears" -- those are better than most Visine-type brands. They also make ones specifically for computer monitor overuse. If you work in an office with artificial air pumped in, your eyes will get dryer more quickly. And then getting a screen for your monitor that cuts down on glare also helps, as would the previous suggestion of taking breaks to focus on something else. There are also eye exercises you can get. And checking the prescription wouldn't help.

And then if all else fails, advil and a lot of coffee, that'll do it. Or getting a job with the US Forest Service.

2008-12-11 11:46:08
181.   Xeifrank
176. I went through a terrible spell of dry eyes in my early 30s. It turned out it was my eyes starting to go bad due to age. :)
My best remedy before being outfitted with a good pair of reading glasses (I only need glasses for computer and reading work), was artificial tear drops and a gel that you could actually put on your eye-lid that would work it's way into the corner of your eyes for lubrication. Both worked but were temporary fixes. You may want to try different kinds of artificial tear drops, I found the most effective ones, were the ones with the most texture or stickiness to them. I'd also have your vision checked and of course check the lighting and monitor positioning at your workplace.
vr, Xei
2008-12-11 11:46:18
182.   underdog
...wouldn't hurt I meant, above.

My brain is totally flayed today. Er, frayed. Er, fried. Actually, any of the above.

2008-12-11 11:47:10
183.   bhsportsguy
182 The gf is doing better I hope.
2008-12-11 11:51:16
184.   underdog
183 Much! Thanks. :-) Hasn't been her best year for health but all looks brighter now.

Btw, Jon has a NPUT.

2008-12-11 11:52:53
185.   Jon Weisman
NPUT

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