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Monday, January 31, 2005
Sosa trade waiting approval.
CHICAGO (AP) -- Sammy Sosa was once as popular a fixture at Wrigley Field as the ivy-covered brick walls and the ancient scoreboard hanging over the center field bleachers.

Fans flocked to the neighborhood ball park to watch one of his majestic home runs, while other congregated in the streets to try and retrieve one of them.

Now he's on his way out of Chicago. A trade to the Baltimore Orioles for Jerry Hairston and two prospects is expected to reach Commissioner Bud Selig's desk Monday for approval.

All Sammy, All The Time. "Until this deal -- or deals, as I shall explain -- is finalized, I'm going to obsess a little about the Sammy-to-Baltimore trade... this is bigger than the Nomar trade, in many ways it can be argued that this is the biggest name involved in a Cubs trade since they dealt away Ron Santo and Billy Williams in the mid-1970's." (and another thing!)

OF Situation not looking so good. "Well I am all for getting rid of Sammy Sosa, but only if it means bringing in a better or equal product. It is not looking like that will happen." (Baseball Diamond News)

.... How the mighty have fallen.
I am perplexed by the reports coming out that Sammy Sosa is being traded to the Orioles. If these reports are to be believed, the seventh-most prolific home run hiter in baseball history is being traded for Jerry Hairston and a bag of baseballs, and the Cubs are paying most of his salary for next season.

I mean, are you telling me the Giants couldn't figure out a way to give the Cubs one or two of our prospects and, say, Edgardo Alfonzo, and come out ahead in the deal. If I'm a GM and I read these reports, I would immediately call up the Cubs and offer something better than what the Orioles are. I don't get it. Sure, Sosa's had a pretty bad couple of seasons, but he still hit 35 home runs in 120 games last season. Wouldn't you think the guy deserves a chance to rebound?
(Only Baseball Matters)

Sammy S-O’s-Eh? Mike compares Sosa to the other all-time Cub greats. (Mike's Baseball Rants)

SABR meeting report, part 1 (Kevin Uhlich). "He talked about the rich history of the President throwing out the first pitch, even though, as is fitting to his role, he also sees it as an operational nightmare. He hopes it goes back to being an annual tradition, and is how MLB kicks off the season every year, even if, due to the RFK renovations, they couldn't play the team's first game in Washington." (Nationals Pastime)

SABR meeting report, part 2 (Paul White). "Depth plagues our entire organization. [White] said it was clear that when Omar Minaya was GM, he gutted the farm system, because those were the only valuable bargaining chips that he had, in order to remain competitive. Before Minaya, the Expos were becoming more and more statistically oriented (i.e., a Moneyball team). When MLB put Omar in charge, he reversed that course, because he's a gut instinct / 5 tools guy, who wants absolutely no part of any spreadsheets being placed in front of him. He also was willing to take big risks and come up a big loser on someone, preferring, for example, someone he felt had a chance to be a #1, even if he also had a big chance to become a bust, over someone he knew would be a #3, but probably would never be much more." (Nationals Pastime)

State of the Twins: Catchers. (Aaron's Baseball Blog)

Humble Pie and Modesty Cake.
In some ways, writing Dodger Thoughts is like whipping up a meal for the entire mess tent. And on some days, despite my efforts at gourmet preparation, I’m Igor ladling creamed corn.

One particular meal seems to go wrong for Chef Jon more than any other. Most of my efforts at serving Frank and Jamie McCourt come out flat - overcooked here, underdone there.

On no other issue relating to the Dodgers have I felt more out of sync with my readers. Pepper the McCourts, and patrons tell me to ease off. Serve the McCourts with sugar, and my guests want to spit out the sweetness.
(Dodger Thoughts)

Monday QOTD: The Yount and the Rest-list. "Quick Hit QOTD: Who are the best players in the history of the game as teenagers? Note, this is more about how good they were when they were teens, not the 18-year-old who hits .240 with two steals in 150 AB and turns out to be Ty Cobb." (Batter's Box Baseball Blog)

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