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Friday Applesauce

Arizona Fall League

Peoria Saguaros 9, Surprise Rafters 1

  • Daniel Murphy went 2-for-6 with a double and two RBI in what is said to be his last game at second base. The AFL all star game is today, so we'll find out this weekend if that's really the case.
  • Josh Thole went 1-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored.
  • Jason Vargas started the game and pitched five scoreless innings, allowing just a single while striking out one.

Dominican Winter League

Aguilas Cibaenas 14, Tigres de Licey 7

  • Salvador Paniagua (C-Licey) went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.
  • Luis Terrero (CF-Aguilas) went 1-for-4 with a walk, an RBI and a run scored.

Mexican Pacific League

Algodoneros de Guasave 6, Aguilas de Mexicali 4

  • Tim Lavigne (P-Gusave) picked up the save, allowing a hit in a scoreless ninth.

Tomateros de Culiacan 12, Caneros de los Mochis 6

  • Matias Carrillo (P-Culiacan) allowed an unearned run on two hits in an inning of work.

Venezuelan Winter League

Caribes de Anzoategui 6, Navegantes del Magallanes 2

  • Gustavo Molina (C-Magallanes) went 0-for-2 with a walk.

Joel Sherman believes the Mets will pursue Derek Lowe and Brian Fuentes. I like Lowe a lot, though he's getting up in years. I've also thrown my hat in the Fuentes ring here before.

At RaysGeek, Mike Newman looks at the last ten years of Rays draft classes to see where some lessons can be learned.

Whoops! Someone let Eddie Kunz near a computer again.

Ken Davidoff says that the Mets "have convinced themselves" that Francisco Rodriguez is too expensive and not worth pursuing.

Fire Joe Morgan hates Jayson Stark and Jim Caple.

Replacement Level Yankee Weblog breaks down the case for Mark Teixeira using fancy numbers and tables and whatnot. The conclusion: "If you can’t get Pujols, might as well go for the second best first baseman in baseball, right?"

Speaking of Teixeira, Beyond the Boxscore ranks last year's first basemen (second basement and center fielders have already been covered). Teix is number two; Carlos Delgado is a surprising #9, right between Adrian Gonzalez and Justin Morneau and ahead of Jason Giambi, Ryan Howard, Prince Fielder, Derrek Lee, and a bunch of others.

The Braves don't seem inclined to part with their young talent in exchange for Jake Peavy. For what it's worth, Keith Law thinks the rumors floating around about how much the Braves might have to give up are bonkers (subscription required for LawBlog).

At FanGraphs, Dave Cameron looks at some free agent landmines, including Manny Ramirez, about whom he concludes:

He carried Los Angeles to the playoffs, and showed that his bat is still alive and kicking, that Manny Being Manny can still be quite valuable. That doesn’t change the facts, however, that Manny turns 37 next summer and he’s already such a terrible defender that he deserves to be a full time DH. 2008 was also his best season since 2002, so if you’re re-signing him expecting to get that kind of performance again, you’re going to be disappointed.

Speaking of FanGraphs, they've souped up their team pages, which are now basically the awesomest thing ever. We're talking sortable team stats on everything FanGraphs tracks, including breakdowns by month as well as batter/pitcher/reliever/starter (explanatory post here).

With Brad Lidge finishing 2008 as one of the best closers in baseball and continuting that run of brilliance into the playoffs and now the World Series, Astros fans are asking if they got enough in return. Michael Bourn's 57 OPS+ not doing it for ya?

Will Carroll takes a look at nibblers, to see which pitchers are the best (and the worst) at putting hitters away after getting up 0-2 in the count.

In football news, the Giants play the Steelers this week, and SB Nation Giants blog Big Blue View compares Eli and Ben, making the case for Eli (it was actually a response to this post at Behind the Steel Curtain which makes the case for Big Ben)