Beltre or bust
Jim Caple writes on ESPN.com gets in some punches —
Had the Mariners invested money when they should have — they didn’t even spend the much-hyped Kaz Sasaki savings, as they promised they would last year — Seattle wouldn’t face the daunting task it does now: Dramatically overhauling a team so old that its clubhouse sound system should be an eight-track cassette player.
He also buys into the Sexson-Delgado-type rumors, saying that they won’t go after Beltre.
Instead, they will go after the next level of more affordable free agents, players who might be able to help significantly but aren’t going to generate Ichiro Bobblehead Night-like lines at the season ticket window.
Still, I’m not despairing. Beyond the rash of local articles mentioning the persuit of Beltre, there’s increasing recognition in the wider press that the team’s serious.
Woo-hoo! I agree with Dave (and many others) that given the state of the team, they need to either spend on Beltre/Beltran long-term or stay away from long-term deals entirely.
I think of it this way: in 2006, when hopefully the team’s looking to add the final pieces around a team with King Felix and some other young, cheap core talent, I don’t want to be resigned to “well, once Sexson and Koskie’s contracts are up next year, that’ll free up $12m we could spend on a top pitcher…”