Am I the only one who really wants Griffey back, no matter the cost?
Aw, hell, who am I fooling? I was going to take the other side on this one for the sake of discussion, but I just can’t do it. I expect that he’ll have one more good season (meaning he stays healthy and hits well) before his current contract is up, but other than that, I think he’s just about done. Griffey was great when he was here and I’m glad I was able to watch him all those years, but it just doesn’t make sense to take on his injuries or his contract, regardless of how many fond memories you or I might have of him in an M’s uniform.
In other news, remember how Ben Davis is supposedly being given a chance to win the starting job this spring? It’s not going well so far, as Bob Melvin has chosen to publicly rip him for his pitch-calling in Monday’s loss to Anaheim. “Maybe the pitch selection wasn’t good, with back-to-back changes when the guys were behind (on his fastball) the whole time. We have a guy behind the plate (Davis) who’s got to know that.”
Call me crazy, but I’ve never seen the good in this kind of thing. If Melvin has a problem with Davis, he should take it up with him in the clubhouse, not in the media.
To hit the PECOTA point briefly — the system goes through and finds comparable players through a number of factors and then comes up witha probability curve. PECOTA’s found a bunch of guys who collapsed at that point in their career and those guys, as a group, didn’t come back. It’s worth noting that the guys PECOTA found aren’t particularly good matches — the best one, Duke Snider, is decent, but as a whole it’s not particularly convincing. PECOTA notes this, but for what it does give us, it figures Griffey’s ready for someone to stick a fork in him.
To mention Snider, though — looking at that career fall apart is just plain ugly. At this Griffey point in Snider’s career, he played 85, 80, 129, and 91 games before he was out of baseball at the age of 37, and while he was productive when he was playing, he wasn’t the player he’d once been.
I wouldn’t take Griffey back unless the price was close to free. There’s definately an upside there, but at what cost? Right now it’s a bad substitute for the Omar trade: the team trying to bring back an expensive, damaged, ineffective, once-popular player who once had better days here in Seattle. This is the kind of move the team should absolutely not be making. We can only hope the doctors are able to stop the insanity again if it comes to that.
A few followups on the Jr. post from yesterday.
1. The popular sentiment seems to be that he can take over as DH next year after Edgar retires, and that he’d be more healthy and effective as a full-time DH. First off, we have no evidence that this is true, as he’s incurred several injuries running the bases. We also have no knowledge of whether Jr. would even want to DH, and there’s not enough evidence of anyone improving as a hitter simply because they’re asked to put their glove away to believe that its an actual effect of becoming a DH.
2. I agree that PECOTA’s projections for Jr’s playing time is low. We can’t assume that there is no scenario in which he will stay healthy. The fact that injuries have shortened his last three seasons (which are what influence PECOTA the most) expose a flaw in the system.
3. How frustrating would it be to watch Carlos Beltran sign a 5 year, $65 million deal next winter, taking him through the prime of his career as one of the elite all around players in the game, while the M’s fail to get involved because of the millstone that is Griffey’s contract? When rationalizing a Griffey acquisition by saying that he’s the best available player now, realize that far superior players will be available in the not too distant future, and will almost certainly command less money.
In non-Griffey news, Jeff Shaw rebutted my critique of Ralph Wiley and launched his own offensive against the worst that ESPN.com has offered up recently. My main issue with Wiley is that he’s more of an advocate than a columnist. Nearly all of his offerings flow through the filter of a minority who feels oppressed by ‘the man’ (despite the fact that he’s employed by ‘the man’) and needs to defend his brothers, regardless of the circumstances. I’m expecting a Wiley piece in the near future explaining why Terrell Owens is being robbed of his “right to pick where he wants to play”, despite the fact that he’s not a free agent, thanks to the failings of his agent. Just another instance of the big mean white man holding down the brother, right Ralph?
And, after today’s piece (which I won’t link to, because I don’t want anyone subjecting themselves to it on my account), Ryder has built himself his own wing in the discussion. Forget Damon Stoudamire; I demand a drug test on Rob Ryder. And an apology from whoever green lighted his column. Just painful.
As for Easterbrook, I’m convinced that he’s only written one column in the history of TMQ. Each week, he simply updates his template with new names and scores and hits submit as an original entry. Stop me before I blitz again, indeed.
We now resume our regularly scheduled Mariners talk.