Monday, December 5, 2011

Baseball's Winter Heating Up

Check it out - "All World All Sports"

-Digger's Daily-

Miami Marlins making early waves went out on a limb by signing Jose Reyes. Marlins have a new name - Miami. Soon to be new stadium - Sun Life Stadium. New uniforms. New attitude. New spending spree - a first in recent memory for Marlins teams.
A new generation of baseball is coming to Miami. Their organization is waving long term deals at key franchise-type players in a effort to solidify a solid, competitive Miami future. A generous deal by the City of Miami (now under investigation) affords Miami a long overdue opportunity to keep their star players and attract new ones. Just signed - NL batting champion Jose Reyes for 6 years, $106,000,000.00. Reyes is a great player with one major downside. Reyes has been sidelined extensively throughout his career in New York. If he stays healthy then count Miami as a serious NL East contender for years to come. Hanley Ramirez will shift from SS to 3B giving Miami an outstanding left side of the infield offensively and defensively.
Free agent closer Heath Bell was Miami's second major signing in two days (3 years, $27,000,000.00) and they're hot on Albert Pujols trail. Another name mentioned often is Mark Buerhle. Nobody should expect the Marlins to toss around Red Sox or Yankees kind of money. This is a team grooming very good talent and now adding a few select top veterans. Shrewd long range plans in the works. Marlins baseball will be a must watch when 2012 season begins.

Hall of Fame
It's about time !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ron Santo ( is finally heading into the Hall. I will never understand how Santo wasn't voted in during the 15 year eligibility votes. Then comes the HOF Veterans Committee which basically has the power to elect players who never received enough votes. Here's the real injustice. Veterans Committee had 12 years - 12 - to right a wrong. Is it their inner guilt taking over? Ron Santo died one year ago. Now, he gets in? Why not when he was alive allowing him the feeling of being a Hall of Fame inductee? How utterly miserable. Bittersweet.

Free Agents
Albert Pujols is the big fish on the market. He can pick whichever team he wants. Plenty of speculation as to where he'll end up. Plenty of teams will make offers - unless Pujols seeks ARod money. Then again, one never knows what kind of crazy contract might come from fickle owners in bidding wars? Miami is a great place to live. Will be a great place to play in a brand new hitters friendly stadium. Star studded lineup. Solid pitchers? Theo Epstein's chasing hard after Pujols. Esptein helped remove one curse. Can he work magic for the Cubs? Time will tell. Giants need to step up after losing out on Reyes. Perhaps Albert's just testing the market for leverage in St. Louis?
Big question marks surrounding many teams. The usual characters - Red Sox, Yankees, Phillies and perhaps Braves - will keep throwing big bucks around. What has me wondering is strategy of low budget teams or teams in financial distress? LA Dodgers and NY Mets with cash flow problems. LA secured a new SS signing utility man Jerry Hairston Jr. Mets might be willing to sell off everything possible. David Wright should beg to get out of NY. Angels, Cardinals, Red Sox & White Sox would be great fits if Mets follow a path of quietly severing ties with big salaries to gain useful prospects.
Kansas City & Washington have me curious too. Their once young talent is maturing. They need pitching and veteran leadership. How will front office's respond? It isn't easy attracting star pitchers to KC or Washington just yet?
Believe it or not, I've been reading how the most coveted free agents might be utility type (multi-position) players. Adam Kennedy and Hairston off the board quickly with more to follow soon. Prince Fielder sweepstakes has been rather quiet.

Plenty of rumors and headlines soon to follow. Can't wait to see how the dust settles.

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