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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
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The Dodgers' Opt-Out Clause: Leave Dodgertown
2006-11-14 07:08
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

A couple of times a year, you can read a report that the Dodgers are preparing to leave their Spring Training home in Dodgertown. It has always been smoke, but eventually, enough smoke on this front figures to build over time that there will be either a) fire or b) a giant black cloud that pulverizes those who do not repent their sins (c.f. Lost).

Today, Ken Alltucker and Carrie Watters of the Arizona Republic report the latest threat to Vero Beach's hold on the Dodgers - a proposed facility in Glendale, Arizona that would host the Dodgers and Chicago White Sox. This report has a tad more substance because the Glendale City Council is slated to meet Wednesday to vote on preliminary agreements with both teams.

The Dodgers' lease in Florida has 15 more years to run, but the Dodgers can escape the lease by paying off Indian River County's bonds, according to the Republic. And the Dodgers have long since stopped making promises to stay in Vero Beach, because of a desire to bring the team's spring workout closer to Los Angeles fans and management.

From Alltucker and Watters:

But the project still faces hurdles: The city will probably seek funding from the Arizona Tourism and Sports Authority but will face competition for limited state dollars. The White Sox also have contractual obligations in Tucson.

The sports authority was created, in part, to support the Cactus League with money to update and build facilities. Glendale will likely have to compete with Goodyear for funds. Goodyear and the Cleveland Indians are looking for money from the authority to build a $77.5 million spring training stadium. The sports authority will meet Friday to begin considering the Goodyear/Indians' proposal, which every major West Valley city except Glendale has endorsed.

Sports authority officials had previously said they have about $48 million left to pledge to one more spring training facility, preferably a two-team facility. The authority recently refinanced bonds, which could give it some flexibility, Board Chairman Larry Landry said last week. ...

The Dodgers would not discuss their plans publicly other than to confirm talks with Glendale over a memorandum of understanding to move to a new stadium. The team will "explore all options," said Camille Johnston, the Dodgers' senior vice president of communications.

"We're saddened by this," said Joseph Baird, Florida's Indian River County administrator. "We've had a great relationship with the Dodgers for 58 years. Unfortunately, they have had to make a business decision."

Update: From the comments ...

The lesson, I guess, is that betrayal is a worse sin than never committing to your commitment in the first place.

Update 2: Vin Scully ...

I would think it's time for a move. Vero Beach was greatly associated with the Dodgers, but particularly the Brooklyn Dodgers and it is far, far away from our fan base in Los Angeles and Southern California. It would make sense in many ways, including business, radio, television and others to move closer to Southern California.

Comments (82)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-11-14 07:45:01
1.   Sushirabbit
Funny how this has more meaning to me than any player, because I grew up down there instead of in LA.

I understand the reasons, and since I haven't been there for over 20 years, I really shouldn't have any emotional attachment to the place.

2006-11-14 07:55:41
2.   Spageticus
I traveled down to Vero with my father when I was in grad school. Now that I'm teaching, I had planned on the two of us making a tradition of driving down there each spring together.

There is a certain aura surrounding the Dodgertown grounds; former players are everywhere and you can still talk to some oldtimer Brooklyn fans. The beauty of Dodgertown was twofold: The grounds hosted only the Dodgers, and only the most diehard fans would travel out from California.

There is also some good in moving to Arizona: rainouts will be fewer and more fans have the means to make a six-hour drive instead of an expensive flight or a 40-hour drive.

Guess I'll just have to adjust my spring traditions.

2006-11-14 08:05:19
3.   dzzrtRatt
The real significance if they make this move?

It means the Dodgers really won't go back to Brooklyn.

2006-11-14 08:10:52
4.   Disabled List
The transition of the Dodgers from one of baseball's flagship franchises with a national following, to just another MLB rank-and-file team with a regional fan base and nothing more, is almost complete.

So management is going to sweep away 58 years of tradition at Vero Beach, a place that allows fans and players to actively commune with the team's great history, for a facility in Arizona that they would have to SHARE with the White Sox???

So sad.

2006-11-14 08:13:44
5.   Sam DC
Real nice profile of Nats' manager to be Manny Acta in the Post today. Apparently, when he was 22, a scout sat him down and said he had a career as a manager but not a player.

http://tinyurl.com/ymhotb

2006-11-14 08:27:44
6.   D4P
But the project still faces hurdles: The city will probably seek funding from the Arizona Tourism and Sports Authority but will face competition for limited state dollars.

Economists have long pointed out (often to no avail) that sports teams are not the local economic catalysts that team owners claim them to be when seeking public funding for new stadiums and such. Among other things, owners overestimate the economic impacts, pointing to stadium revenues as an indicator. The mistake they make is in assuming that all the money spent at the stadium is new economic activity, when in fact much of that money would have been spent in the community anyway on something other than the sporting event if the sporting event hadn't taken place.

Here's a story about Seattle's decision to stop subsidizing the SuperSonics.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/swybw

2006-11-14 08:39:11
7.   dzzrtRatt
The transition of the Dodgers from one of baseball's flagship franchises with a national following, to just another MLB rank-and-file team with a regional fan base and nothing more, is almost complete.

This is a little much. The Dodgers remain one of the "flagship franchises," owing to their history, to the Stadium, and to their popularity. Notwithstanding the indignities of Fox era and the absence of championships since '88, they still manage to draw more paying customers than anyone else year to year.

This is also an east-coast-centric view. To the national sports media, there are three "flagship franchises": The Yankees, the Red Sox and (as anti-heroes) the Cubs. If the Dodgers were ever a part of that club, it was only because of their long run of success from '59-'81, during which they were in nearly 1/3rd of all World Series. If they're a "rank and file" franchise now, it's because the Dodgers play like one.

But I still think the Dodgers stand out. You can know a "flagship franchise" by its enemies. How many teams have their own anti-cheer? When I hear crowds on the road cry "Beat L-A, beat L-A..." I know all is right with Dodgerdom.

2006-11-14 08:40:15
8.   Bob Timmermann
It means the Dodgers really won't go back to Brooklyn.

Don't tell Dave Anderson and George Vescey that.

2006-11-14 08:45:16
9.   D4P
Don't tell Dave Anderson and George Vescey that

Are they in the "No sleep 'til Brooklyn" crowd or something...?

2006-11-14 08:49:48
10.   Bob Timmermann
Anderson chided some of the Dodger players for not knowing about the team's Brooklyn background before the NLDS.

Vescey wanted the stadium for the Mets to be named for Jackie Robinson. In the end, just a section of it will be.

Neither man is particulary enamored of Walter O'Malley, to put it nicely.

2006-11-14 08:54:21
11.   RZG
Is Colletti going to be upset they're opting out of another contract with the use of an option? (just kidding)
2006-11-14 08:54:22
12.   D4P
As a Dodger fan, I'm not sure how I would feel about another team naming their stadium after Jackie.

As an aside, I see that from 1947-1950, Jackie stole 100 bases, and was caught stealing zero (yes, zero) times.

100-0

2006-11-14 08:55:56
13.   katysdad
Does it qualify as ironic that an organization that has expressed concern (dismay?) over a player opting out of a contract is considering opting out of a contract of its own?
2006-11-14 08:57:33
14.   Bob Timmermann
12

A lot of players had zero caught stealing from 1947-1950.

2006-11-14 09:00:39
15.   D4P
14
I meant to ask about that, but forgot. Was that mostly the pitchers' fault...?
2006-11-14 09:02:47
16.   katysdad
12 According to Retrosheet, Robinson was caught stealing 10 times in 1947 and a league-leading 14 times in 1949. His records are incomplete for 1948 and 1950.

A number of statistical catagories are incomplete for the first half of the century as they weren't accurately kept or, in some instances, that category did not exist (i.e IBB and the short-lived 1980's sensation game winning rbi).

2006-11-14 09:04:36
17.   Bob Timmermann
15
Oh, you're not kidding?

The CS stat wasn't regularly kept then so most sources just list a zero back then. They should list a dash or something instead.

Nobody caught Duke Snider stealing from 1947-50 either.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/s/snidedu01.shtml

2006-11-14 09:07:02
18.   katysdad
Sacrafice flies is another category that has not alway been kept. Robinson's first recorded regular season sacrafice fly came in 1954. His player record shows no sacrafice flies in any of the four World Series he played in prior to 1954.

Play by play for the World Series must be easier to come by than the regular season games played in the same year.

2006-11-14 09:08:39
19.   D4P
Darn, I guess Jackie wasn't a good as a thought...So, do the various new-fangled stats that incorporate SB% overestimate the worth of players* who played back when SB stats weren't kept very well...?

*Relative to players who play(ed) when SB stats were kept correctly

2006-11-14 09:09:37
20.   katysdad
Off topic, but another irony ruling is needed: It it irony if I spank my daugther as punishmet for hitting someone?
2006-11-14 09:09:46
21.   Bob Timmermann
Sacrifice flies weren't a separate stat until 1954. In the first 30 years or so of the 20th century, SFs were just counted as sacrifices with no differentiation. Then the Powers That Be stopped counting SFs all together and charged players at bats. When Ted Williams hit .406 in 1941, he did it without the benefit of sacrifice flies to help his average. I read somewhere that Williams would have hit well over .410 or maybe even .415 if he had gotten the benefit of sac flies.
2006-11-14 09:13:33
22.   Bob Timmermann
19
Generally, players from the past got caught stealing a lot more than they do today. In the Deadball Era, players stole a lot and a lot of them got thrown out. Then once baseball discovered the home run, stolen bases declined, but players still pretty much got thrown out at a good clip.

It's only since the 1990s or so, it seems that the majority of managers have realized the risk-reward of the stolen base.

Except for Jim Tracy with Oscar Robles.

2006-11-14 09:14:40
23.   D4P
Then the Powers That Be stopped counting SFs all together and charged players at bats

Sounds like the Powers That (Used To) Be were smarter than the Powers That (Currently) Be.

2006-11-14 09:16:44
24.   katysdad
19 Retrosheet currently has complete statistics for every season from 1957 through 2005, as well as 1911, 1921 and 1922. So, it would make sense that any player rating formula (unless it uses data that Retrosheet is not privy to) that includes stolen base percentage would be biased against players from these seasons as most would not have SB% of 100. With the exception of someone going 1 for 1 or for Kevin McReynolds in 1988 (a Major League record 21 for 21).
2006-11-14 09:19:31
25.   Disabled List
7 This is a little much. The Dodgers remain one of the "flagship franchises," owing to their history, to the Stadium, and to their popularity.

I don't think it is. Having a great history isn't really enough, there has to be some kind of palpable connection to it. The Athletics have a great and storied history too, but you would never feel it in Oakland.

Dodgertown was kind of a living representation of the tradition and history of the Dodgers. Everyone who's ever been to Vero speaks reverently of it. It was a real connection to the past that gave the Dodgers some of their universal appeal. Swapping it out for a shared facilty in Arizona is just another diminishment of the Dodgers on the national stage.

The Dodgers draw well at home because L.A. is a great baseball town, but that doesn't say anything about their national status. With the long concession lines, boorish fans, and intrusive advertisements, the Dodger Stadium experience (for me, anyways) is a far cry from what it used to be. YMMV. And you might be somewhat right about the "Beat L.A." chant, but I still think that has more to do with provincial antipathy towards Los Angeles than anything else.

2006-11-14 09:22:14
26.   Bob Timmermann
24
Almost all of the player rating formulae, like Linear Runs, Win Shares, and Runs Created, are adjusted by the data available for the season.
2006-11-14 09:26:26
27.   das411
"the Dodgers can escape the lease by paying off Indian River County's bonds..."

When did he end up with Cleveland??? So much for that LF with power!

25 - YMMV?

2006-11-14 09:26:40
28.   Jon Weisman
13 - Since the conventional wisdom is that the Dodgers would have understood had J.D. Drew not (allegedly) promised he would stay, the Irony Committee rules no.

The lesson, I guess, is that betrayal is a worse sin than never committing to your commitment in the first place.

2006-11-14 09:27:19
29.   Jon Weisman
27 - I know that one (for once)! Your mileage may vary.
2006-11-14 09:27:57
30.   katysdad
26 So when comparing players from seasons with SB% available against those without SB% available, that particular statistic is removed from the formula?
2006-11-14 09:30:36
31.   katysdad
The lesson, I guess, is that betrayal is a worse sin than never committing to your commitment in the first place.

You just blew my mind.

2006-11-14 09:30:50
32.   Bob Timmermann
30
I believe that is the case. In the first Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, he lists all the permutations of Runs Created and how it changes over time.

It's very long.

I will ask someone in "the biz" about this.

2006-11-14 09:33:13
33.   Jon Weisman
31 - In "Married to the Mob," the child actor playing Michelle Pfeiffer's daughter says, I believe, "You just blew my mind" to Matthew Modine's character, and the delivery of the line is about as wonderfully cute as any kid has ever been in the movies.
2006-11-14 09:38:30
34.   D4P
The lesson, I guess, is that betrayal is a worse sin than never committing to your commitment in the first place

Kinda like not telling someone you're going to take them camping and then not taking them.

2006-11-14 09:40:26
35.   katysdad
33 - I never saw that movie. I was going more for Kramer:

Kramer: Listen. Heads up, Elaine. I'm gonna have to stop by later and pick up a fax.
Elaine: At work?
Kramer: No. At your apartment.
Elaine: I don't have a fax machine.
Jerry: Here we go.
Kramer: Well, now what are we gonna do? (to Jerry) See? This is why you should get a fax and a Xerox.
Jerry: And a dead bolt.
Kramer: (to Elaine) Are ya sure you don't have one? Because there's a lot of stuff in my apartment I've never seen.
Elaine: Then maybe you have a fax machine.
Kramer: You just blew my mind.

2006-11-14 09:47:59
36.   Bob Timmermann
25
Although I don't agree with the part about Dodgertown, I think the last paragraph of that post is on target.
2006-11-14 09:51:14
37.   Jon Weisman
34 - LOL, exactly.
2006-11-14 09:53:01
38.   dzzrtRatt
25 Another possibility for why the Dodgers might seem to have sunk back into the pack: Los Angeles is no longer a "flagship city." There is still a local contingent that likes to call this the city of the future, but I don't think we have that image outside of LA anymore.
2006-11-14 09:58:41
39.   Jon Weisman
38 - We're not the gateway to the Pacific Rim anymore?
2006-11-14 10:01:20
40.   Bob Timmermann
39
We used to be "The Gateway to the Pacific Rim" but we found out that production costs were cheaper in Vancouver.
2006-11-14 10:02:29
41.   Jon Weisman
40 - I guess I'll scrap my plans for a giant arch near Dodger Stadium.
2006-11-14 10:03:35
42.   RunninRebel
I'm torn over this move. While it's disappointing that another pillar of baseball history will fall with the move out of Dodgertown, living 10 minutes away from the proposed stadium site eases that disappointment.
2006-11-14 10:03:43
43.   Bob Timmermann
30
Phil Birnbaum of the SABR Statistical Analysis Committee, informed that sometimes stolen bases are used without corresponding CS data in rating systesm, but there are other adjustments made.

He believes that Linear Weights, Pete Palmer's method, never uses SB unless CS is available too.

2006-11-14 10:04:52
44.   Bob Timmermann
If the Dodgers had spring training in Glendale, CA, I'd be there! We could all hang out at Zankou Chicken after the exhibition games.
2006-11-14 10:07:33
45.   katysdad
43 Thanks, Bob.
2006-11-14 10:24:03
46.   Strike4
25, the Dodger Stadium experience has declined for me too. The past season was my first year of not attending any home games. There's too many pollutants to the game itself... video, pounding music, longer lines, etc. Plus I'd rather maximize the remaining time available with Vin, and just mute the commercials. Sigh, I sound crotchety.
2006-11-14 10:26:58
47.   Robert Daeley
Jerry Crasnick has an article up on espn.com re: "Looking for a bat? Here are five productive players -- four outfielders and a first baseman -- whose names are likely to be kicked around the suites and the lobby of the Naples Grande Resort. We've ranked them from the most likely to least likely to change teams this winter."

1. Adam Dunn
2. Vernon Wells
3. Mark Teixeira
4. Andruw Jones
5. Carl Crawford

http://tinyurl.com/yd3ey8

I can't see us grabbing onto any of them at the moment, but on Crawford, Crasnick says: "That's why GM Andrew Friedman can afford to ask for the moon. If the Dodgers make a call on Crawford, they'll probably have to consider Chad Billingsley and Jonathan Broxton as a starting point."

2006-11-14 10:26:58
48.   DXMachina
I will be disappointed if the Dodgers go. Vero is one of the few places where you can still get close enough to the players and coaches to actually converse with them if they aren't busy. It's by far my favorite of the spring training facilities I've been to. That the guys I was talking to were associated with my favorite team was the icing on the cake.
2006-11-14 10:28:50
49.   caseybarker
Why must the Los Angeles Dodgers have a national following and be a flagship franchise?
2006-11-14 10:31:04
50.   D4P
If the Dodgers make a call on Crawford, they'll probably have to consider Chad Billingsley and Jonathan Broxton as a starting point

I wouldn't even consider Billingsley and Broxton as an ending point. In fact, I'm not sure I would trade either player for Crawford. Maybe Broxton (if he's gonna remain a reliever), but certainly not Billingsley.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-11-14 10:35:19
51.   Bob Timmermann
It's hard to be a flagship franchise with a national following when you never win anything.

With the baffling exception of the Cubs.

2006-11-14 10:38:39
52.   bigcpa
This bit from today's Henson column is bizarre:

"Garciaparra's contract last season included incentives based on plate appearances. This time around, the Dodgers would rather give him a multiyear deal at a higher base salary, enabling the injury-prone Garciaparra to take frequent days off without feeling as if he needs to play simply to meet incentives."

OK so he was really stretching himself to get into 122 games. So we'd give him a raise to play fewer games through age 34-35. It's just crazy enough to work!

2006-11-14 11:13:11
53.   ToyCannon
Makes sense to me. Anytime you have an incentive laden deal the player will do anything he can to remain in the lineup even to the detriment of the team unless the manager really has big enough balls to sit a star and take money out of their mouths.
2006-11-14 11:23:34
54.   bigcpa
53 OK but paying more to get less doesn't make sense to me. If we're being unemotional and smart in letting Gagne walk then the same rule should apply for Nomar. He should DH for the Angels and platoon with Kotchman at 1b.
2006-11-14 11:32:40
55.   ToyCannon
54
Not disagreeing, just saying that incentive laden deals related to games/at bats/IP/games started have problems has oppossed to incentive laden deals related to actual productivity, but no agent worth his salt would ever let his client sign such a deal.

I'd be more then happy to give Nomar 15/3 to be our super utility player but I expect he'll get 24/3 from someone.

2006-11-14 11:47:05
56.   Bob Timmermann
Incentives related to productivity are also not allowed under the terms of the CBA.
2006-11-14 11:48:50
57.   D4P
56
Why do the owners agree to such a clause?
2006-11-14 11:55:12
58.   Curtis Lowe
How many times have they rebuilt Vero in the kast decade due to hurricanes? Maybe the constant threat of hurricanes is a reason for moving to a site Arizona.
2006-11-14 12:03:14
59.   dzzrtRatt
I tend to think the Dodgers aren't in a position to give away any more offense, and so Nomar should be signed.

While it sounds a little wacky, the non-incentive route for Nomar will probably result in him playing more games, not less. Last season, he would play even if his physical condition would have clearly benefited from some days off, which would then have him coming back in a productive capacity sooner. Instead of sucking for five games and then taking 10 games off, he might take 10 games off, and then be solid for three months. It also takes the pressure off of Grady.

"Nomar, my old friend from Boston, how ya feelin' today."

"Great, Grits. Ooch, ouch."

"What was that? Something wrong with you?"

"No, skipper. Just, uh, I was, uh...bit by a spider! That's it. Just a little Cort-aid and I'm good to go."

"Man, I hate them spider bites. They got spiders big as Chevys down in Texas. Okay, Nom' have a great game."

"You bet. Ow. AAAAh."

2006-11-14 12:21:20
60.   bigcpa
I tend to think the Dodgers aren't in a position to give away any more offense, and so Nomar should be signed.

You don't think Loney and friends could match Nomar's production?

2006-11-14 12:22:10
61.   MMSMikey
i hate to say it, but i think its time. everytime the redsox play the dodgers in vero beach, its seems like it is 90% redsox fans. that cant happen.
2006-11-14 12:40:57
62.   ToyCannon
Just read the LA Times article and this is the one section that bugged me the most.
*Q: Who would play center field if the Dodgers sign a power-hitting left fielder such as Alfonso Soriano? And where would that leave incumbent left fielder Andre Ethier?

A: The Dodgers planned to move Drew to center field if they were successful in signing Soriano or Carlos Lee to play left. With Drew out of the picture, the Dodgers will either re-sign Kenny Lofton or pursue a younger center fielder.*

Man I would have loved to have JD playing CF instead of RF. Now I am feeling grumpy about JD leaving.

2006-11-14 12:41:53
63.   scareduck
I think I say this every time this comes up, but... I look forward to the day I can drive to Phoenix and watch the Dodgers in ST. In fact, a Glendale, AZ facility would make them among the the westernmost spring training facilities in the Cactus League.
2006-11-14 12:43:11
64.   Jon Weisman
63 - but easternmost in quality.

(You know someone was gonna say it.)

2006-11-14 12:43:25
65.   D4P
62
I saw that too. I was surprised. I hadn't ever gotten the impression that this Adminstration would allow DJ to play center. Maybe they're just saying that now to either make him feel bad about opting out...
2006-11-14 12:43:38
66.   scareduck
57 - ask Marvin Miller.
2006-11-14 12:53:07
67.   Bob Timmermann
You don't want players to have statistically based incentives because then you run the risk that the players will just try to pad their stats during a game at the expense of the outcome of the game.

"Sacrifice! I ain't gonna sacrifice! I'll get $10,000 more if I get a hit here."

"Hey, I get $20,000 extra if I can steal third here. Who cares if we're down one run and there's two outs and Albert Pujols is up?"

2006-11-14 13:02:26
68.   D4P
67
It's true. Some players are selfish. No telling how many more rally-killing HRs rather than Ersties we'd get under a system of stat-based incentives. On the other hand, maybe Milton would score from second on more singles...

I have a hard time rooting for anyone in the owners vs. players conflict. In general, I'm more sympathetic to the "little guys" than the "fat cats." Plus, if the players are the ones generating revenues, then they should be getting a big chunk of those revenues for themselves.

But I guess I have a hard time thinking of "guys who get paid millions to travel around the country 6-7 months of the year, sit on a bench 3-4 hours a day, with a few short bursts of standing, running, throwing, and swinging mixed in" as little guys. Maybe they're little compared to owners, but not to the other 99.9% of the population.

2006-11-14 13:05:48
69.   dzzrtRatt
60 You don't think Loney and friends could match Nomar's production?

Maybe they will. Eventually, I assume that's the plan. What I liked about 2006 was that we didn't have to depend on Loney and friends, so they could develop without thinking they ever had to carry the team.

If we sign Nomar to 3/24, which I know is a terrible scenario for many here, that doesn't mean we can't trade him if and when Loney and friends take away his job. But if Nomar can remain healthy and gives us lots of stretches like the first half of '06, I'm sure we'd be glad to have him around for three years. He's 33.

2006-11-14 13:18:16
70.   scareduck
68 - But I guess I have a hard time thinking of "guys who get paid millions to travel around the country 6-7 months of the year, sit on a bench 3-4 hours a day, with a few short bursts of standing, running, throwing, and swinging mixed in" as little guys.

Don't forget the part where they're mobbed by young hotties with long legs and brains. Nah, no perqs to this job.

2006-11-14 13:22:22
71.   D4P
70
Money for nothin', and your chicks for free
2006-11-14 13:23:51
72.   Jon Weisman
68 - You say "travel around the country 6-7 months of the year" like it's a good thing. I guarantee that for many if not most players, it is not.

For what that's worth.

2006-11-14 13:29:04
73.   D4P
72
See 70

Just kidding. Yeah, I'm sure the travel gets old.

2006-11-14 13:29:37
74.   Andrew Shimmin
When are we expecting the Matsuzaka news, again? I thought it was supposed to be noon today.
2006-11-14 13:31:33
75.   Bob Timmermann
5 pm PT is the time of the joint announcement. You could look for a link on the Griddle except I prefer to eat dinner rather than tell you that the Red Sox won the bidding.
2006-11-14 13:34:46
76.   Andrew Shimmin
Jeez. Lunch instead of Cy Young news, dinner instead of THE BIGGEST FREE AGENT SIGNING IN THE HISTORY OF this year.

Do you think Ed Bradley would have stopped reporting about General Lee storming the beaches of Normandy, just so he could have dinner? You're why people don't take blogs seriously.

2006-11-14 13:40:04
77.   Jon Weisman
According to his obit, Ed Bradley went to the gym every lunch hour.
2006-11-14 13:43:38
78.   Andrew Shimmin
I bet he would have skipped a day if the ghost of General Lee started invading France, though.
2006-11-14 14:11:18
79.   Linkmeister
72 I didn't get paid millions (more like $20K a year), but I spent a lot of time commuting every other week to West LA from Honolulu, and it got old after about the fourth week.
2006-11-14 15:09:58
80.   twerp
22 "Generally, players from the past got caught stealing a lot more than they do today. In the Deadball Era, players stole a lot and a lot of them got thrown out. Then once baseball discovered the home run, stolen bases declined, but players still pretty much got thrown out at a good clip."

Why do runners get caught less now? Are runners better? Catchers better at throwing? Pitchers speeding up pitch delivery time? What? Why? When? How come? (Scratches head trying to think of more ways to ask, however ill-advised.) ;)

2006-11-14 15:30:16
81.   Daniel Zappala
You're such a twerp. Obviously, the ball has changed since then.
2006-11-14 17:01:27
82.   twerp
Speaking of major twerps, Gary Sheffield on negotiating his Tiger contract sans agent:

"Don't challenge me at things I am good at," Sheffield said. "I am a businessman first. Playing baseball is what I do. People said I needed an agent but I got what I wanted. Nineteen years later I got my point across: You can't beat me on or off the field."

What a guy. All that talent. So humble, too.

http://tinyurl.com/ykxw9a

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