Baseball needs to start up now, not three months from now. Until then, though, the news...
Anthony DiComo takes a look at sort of top prospect Wilmer Flores. I say sort of, since it really seems to depend on who you ask nowadays. His winter league numbers are nice and all, but this is the same league that Dylan Owen dominates every year, so let's not go bonkers. As for where he starts this year, I think you have to move him up to Binghamton. The other option is having him repeat Advanced A for the second time.
The Cardinals are confident about Carlos Beltran's health, heading into 2012. It's just going to be wrong on so many levels, seeing him in a Cardinals uniform, but at least he won't be wearing #15, because Rafael Furcal is a jerk. Of course, then Beltran goes and says stuff like this and my heart breaks a little bit more. #selfishbeltran only wants to play for good team.
The A's acquired Seth Smith from the Rockies, sending a couple of decent back end starter types back to Colorado. This is good, because it will keep the Mets from trading for him, and bring Billy Beane one step closer to rostering a team entirely composed of fourth outfielder/tweener types.
If you thought we were all done linking to crazy things sportswriters are penning about the Hall of Fame, you'd be wrong. This is hella crazy. So is this. But it's Murray Chass, so par for the course.
Yesterday I said I would wait and see to see how much money Gio Gonzalez got from his extension before I made a blind guess about whether or not it would be a good deal. Welp, it's a lot of cashola. Now, he should still be worth it, but it still seems like a bit of an overpay to me considering all the arb years they are buying out.
Angel Pagan is going to get a nice hefty raise from the Giants, as the two sides avoid arbitration. Good for Angel, I'll actually be rooting for him to bounce back. You know, when the Giants aren't playing the Mets. All these players avoided arbitration as well. God bless MLB Trade Rumors.
The Rockies have offered Jamie Moyer a minor league contract for next year. He's forty-nine, by the way. I almost half hope he pitches to like 53 and gets 300 wins, just to see the BBWAA's heads explode when he comes up for Hall of Fame voting.
At fangraphs, Matt Klassen asks the same question that I am sure is causing sleepless nights for many members of the Rangers front office. Of course, if they sign Yu Darvish, that question might be answered for them. Also at the graphs, Dave Cameron asks if the Mariners are better off with Jesus Montero at catcher or DH. Cameron actually makes a pretty decent argument for at least giving Montero a shot as a part-time catcher.
Baseball Prospectus takes on the "proven closer" mantra in one of their roundtables. Great stuff all around.
Interesting piece in the Times on the decline of baseball in Puerto Rico. We'll have to watch and see if the CBA changes have a similiar effect in the Latin American countries as well. The system is kind of unfair (which it is designed to be), I mean, just think how much more money Akeel Morris, for example, would have gotten as an IFA instead of having to go through the draft. I think we are probably closer to a worldwide draft then we are to seeing Puerto Rican citizens made IFAs again, though. Well, that will make the White Sox happy at least.
And Now, Your Mets Highlight of the Day to Tide You Over Until Spring Training: R.A. Dickey's One-Hitter
R.A. Dickey is awesome, you guys.
And Your Non-Baseball Link of the Day: The Classical's 5-Part Series on Paris Saint-Germain
The Classical has quickly become a must-read for me every day (and not just because they have recently posted two seperate articles on independent pro wrestling). This is an incredibly in-depth look at the history of Paris' flagship soccer team, tracing the historical and sociopolitical reasons behind the recent changes in the organization. Quite possibly the best sportswriting piece I will read all year.