A-Rod, Johan, and Perception
So, A-Rod’s a free agent again. He’s going to get a lot of money again. He won’t get it from the Mariners, though – that’s for sure. So this post isn’t about bringing Alex Rodriguez back to Seattle. It won’t happen.
I have a question, though. There’s a large contingent of people in Seatle, especially in the local media, who have spent a significant amount of time lobbying for the Mariners to acquire Johan Santana, regardless of the price. It doesn’t matter that he’s in the last year of his contract or that he’s going to lap the field in terms of dollars given to free agent pitchers next winter. They’re fine surrendering every player on the roster besides Felix to get Johan Santana to Seattle. If it takes Adam Jones, Jeff Clement, and Carlos Triunfel, no problem – they’re just prospects. And if it takes $200 million to sign Johan for 7 years, well, that’s the market price for pitching, and this team needs pitching.
When it comes to Johan Santana, the talk about spending too much money on one player goes out the window. Chemistry is never brought up as an issue, and no story about Johan ever mentions that he’s never won a World Series title despite playing on some pretty good teams the last few years.
Meanwhile, good luck reading a story this winter that doesn’t mention A-Rod’s postseason failures. The amount of writers and talking heads that will disparage Rodriguez because of a personal dislike for him (earned or not) as a person is going to be staggering.
Why is it okay to blow up the farm system and the budget to acquire Johan Santana, but no one has any interest in throwing similar amounts of money at the best player in baseball – the guy who won’t cost you Adam Jones and a handful of good prospects? Are we really at a point where we’re just not interested in adding the best player in the game because he comes across like a pompous jerk?
I’m sorry, but for an organization that employs a lot of people who actually are pompous jerks, that reasoning rings a little hollow.
I know Alex Rodriguez isn’t coming back to Seattle, and I’m fine with that. I am, however, somewhat annoyed by the reasons the organization and a large percentage of people in Seattle don’t want him back.