Friday, November 16, 2007

Have you seen this? Have you heard about this?

Tired of hearing about A-Rod and Barry Bonds yet? It’s been one day since A-Rod started working on another deal with the Yankees and Bonds was indicted and I already feel like I’d be ok if I never heard about either story again, ever.

Lets start with old BALCO Barry…

I know it’s a big story but what is the point of wall-to-wall coverage if you are not presenting any new information. It’s one thing to have a portion of SportCenter about the Bonds story and if you see that same story six times its your own fault for not changing the channel but to focus solely on that one story if there is no new information, like ESPN did yesterday, is pointless.

The other thing that is odd is that whatever the story is the station will get every person they can think of to call in and talk about it. News networks do this all the time and I don’t get it. Now when ESPN had legal analysts and the ‘Game of Shadows’ author on that’s fine because those guys are telling me more than just he got indicted over and over again. The same goes for Buster Onley and Steve Phillips because they talked about the potential baseball ramifications of the situation – but what in the hell does Steven A. Smith have to add to this story?

I get it he yells to make his point, okay, but what does he know about baseball, perjury, or indictments? I thought he was a basketball analyst? If he wants to go on and talk about the Celtics that’s fine but what does he have to do with the Bonds case? Is he operating under the Dave Chappelle “every black man is a qualified paralegal” idea?

This actually reminds me of a lot of another Chappelle-ism. In his special in San Francisco he talks about how on 9/11 MTV had Ja Rule call in to talk about the events. His reply is “I want some answers that Ja Rule might not have.” I think that’s actually a good way to approach this situation. I want some answers that Steven A. might not have.

I feel like I’m picking on Steven A. it’s not really his fault and he brought up some interesting points about other athletes that have broken laws and not faced what Bonds has faced. To some extent he makes good points it does feel like everyone piles on Barry Bonds. I would have been fine with him setting the record then going quietly to live his post baseball life however he chooses.

However if he broke the law he should be adequately punished, I’m just saying I’m not going to lose any sleep over Barry breaking the home run record and there are plenty of that have done steroids and lied about it.

While we are on the subject of Barry…I don’t think its fair to send the 756 ball to the Hall of Fame with an asterisk on it. That is not up to the fans to decide. It is a piece of the history of the game and that decision is up to the Hall. Just like players can’t choose what cap to wear into the hall.

You as a fan can choose not to accept Barry Bond as the home run record holder and I think a lot of people will do that. The fact of the matter is that he hit more home runs in his career than anyone else. If he did cheat then it would be up to the Hall of Fame to decide not to recognize him as the home run king.

No matter what his personality of how he is perceived he shouldn’t have to threaten to boycott his Hall of Fame induction. And if he sticks to that line of thinking then it would be the job of the baseball writers to not bestow the honor on him.

I don’t know what to think of Bonds, his work with BALCO screams guilt because of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative has been involved in so many other doping and ‘roid scandals. If the public is going to be outraged at anyone they should be outraged at people like Victor Conte…if anyone provided fuel to the steroid era fire it was Conte.

A-Rods Super Sweet 16

I’m not sure who was the bigger douche in the announcement of A-Rod opting out during the World Series…was it A-Rod’s doing or Scott Boras or if Joe Buck and Tim McCarver are to be blamed for devoting so much attention to it…what I do know is it turned into a complete and total cluster-fuck.

One part of me says good for A-Rod he finally grew a spine and said “shit I wish I didn’t do that I’m going to fix it because I want to play in New York”…but another part of me thinks he panicked and thought “oh shit no one is going to sign me for 300+ million dollars and I’m going to be the laughing stock of the league and have to play in Japan for a year…Christ who am I Kevin Millar? I better see if I can patch things up with the Yanks”

If the first one is true then Scott Boras has lost his negotiating ridiculous contracts touch. Think about it the Sox got Dice K for way less than was originally asked (don’t count the posting fee) and now the Yankees are going to get A-Rod for 25-75 million less than what he was reportedly asking for. That’s a big blow to Boras if that’s the case.

It’s possible that the owners weren’t interested in doling out that kind of cash and if so good for them but I can also imagine scenario where the next contract Boras gets for someone like Andruw Jones is unreal because he’s – one – pissed at the owners for squashing the market on A-Rod or two – pissed at A-Rod for getting scared and not staying the course.

Part of me feels like Boras knew that someone would pay a ridiculous sum for A-Rod. Not 350 million but by rumoring 350 million you make 300 million sound like a deal. I think A-Rod got nervous and that’s why he’s gone crawling back to New York. Think about it…Boras and A-Rod where definitely locked into selling high. He’s going to be the MVP, so that’s two in his tenure with NY, and he had a monster statistical year.

What then is the point of opting out of a 252 million dollar deal and announcing it during the World Series if you are going to go back to New York when they are offering you way less then what you ‘reportedly’ wanted just to sit down? It makes no sense. Boras had to know that there was a market for what he was asking for other wise why would they opt out?

Why not stay in New York for the last two years of the deal, open up the new stadium and become the irreplaceable player on the roster, that’s the only other way he could command 350 million.

I think A-Rod got nervous and backed out on the plan. His legacy is going to be that of a mercenary, a solider of fortune. He might one day get the “he finally won a championship treatment” but most people are going to remember him as a guy that was all about the paycheck.

One thing I do know…

Is that I’m glad the Sox stayed away from signing him for a king’s ransom. No doubt he’d be impressive in Fenway and a line up of Papi, Manny, A-Rod would make pitchers shit themselves but I’d rather see the Red Sox spent that money on locking up their young studs.

A-Rod is an unbelievable player but in my mind locking up guys like Pedroia, Ellsbury, Buchholz, Lester, Beckett and picking up the option on Manny is a much better value. Especially when Pedroia and Ellsbury have shown they can get it done on the biggest stage, something A-Rod cannot claim. Also Pedroia played the entire playoffs and probably all of September with a broken hand. People aren’t going to miss Trot’s grittiness anymore.

Lock up the Young Guns, pick up Manny’s option and please at least give Lowell a team option for a fourth year. The option doesn’t cost the team anything, it gives you good flexibility and it shows that you are at least trying to keep him around.

However, if the Sox do stick to their no four year deals for players in their mid-30’s it will be hard to fault them. After all it has worked out pretty well so far. I’d be sad to see him go and uber-bummed if he ends up in pinstripes but I have faith in Theo.

I am a little worried at what will happen if he does leave and it doesn’t look great. He’s got two rings and he just had a career year…does he go the Ty Law route and get paid or stay and be a hometown discount hero…

If he goes…

Do the Sox really even entertain the thought of moving Yook, who just won a Gold Glove? And no offense but Joe Crede doesn’t exactly fit the OBP model of the Sox…a .305 career OBP and in ’07 he had an OBP of 258…oosh…Miguel Cabrera could be an answer if they can put in a weight clause like they did with Schilling.

Cabrera would be a solid addition to the lineup and would most likely fill the void left by Lowell but he’s going from the NL to the AL and he kind of looks like lard ass from ‘Stand By Me’…Come on Mikey, come back to the Sox…you know you love that 37 foot wall in left field.

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