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A weblog of baseball news and analysis

Thursday, January 22, 2004
Wow, a whole week since the last post. Sorry. Posts will be scarce between now and the start of the 2004 season.

Sasaki not coming back to Mariners. He's forfeiting the last year of his contract (nearly $10 million) to return to Japan. (Yahoo!)

Japan's career saves leader joining White Sox. "Shingo Takatsu, Japan's career saves leader, has agreed to a $1 million, one-year contract with the Chicago White Sox, The Associated Press learned Wednesday." (Yahoo!)

Halladay agrees to $42 million, four-year deal. He and the Blue Jays avoided arbitration. (Yahoo!)

Thursday, January 15, 2004
Breaking Down the Angels. Rob Neyer: "[S]hould we now consider the Angels the favorites in the West? Based on rosters as they're currently composed, yes we probably should. But that ignores any moves that might be made between now and Opening Day, and it also ignores Billy Beane's proven ability to improve his team in July and August. If I were a betting man, I'd bet on the A's. But the Angels are certainly going to have something to say about that." (

Tuesday, January 13, 2004
Larry Mahnken: "The Yankees have nobody to blame but themselves for not offering arbitration, Clemens didn't betray them, he didn't plan all along to sign with Houston, this isn't some malicious scheme he hatched in mid-summer to make the Yankees look like fools. He just changed his mind. Everybody has the right to change their mind, and I really don't see how Clemens can be blamed for changing his mind in this situation." (Replacement Level Yankees Weblog)

The New Face of Evil, Part Two. Larry Mahnken on the Yankees' pitching. (Replacement Level Yankees Weblog)

The Best Players In Baseball 2004. Dan McLaughlin ranks them according to Established Win Shares. (The Baseball Crank)

Stadium is now on fast track. Doug Moore on the Cardinals' future home. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Monday, January 12, 2004
Angels reach agreement with Guerrero. Five years, $70 million. (San Francisco Chronicle)

AP Source: Clemens shuns retirement to join Astros. (Yahoo!)

Reports: Rogers, Nelson headed to Rangers. And they're going to party like it's 1999. (

Friday, January 09, 2004
Mariners get Aurilia; Guillen headed to Detroit. One year, $3.15 million for Aurilia, and they traded Guillen for prospects. (Yahoo!)

David Cameron: "I expect the team to be thoroughly mediocre next year, winning between 75-85 games, depending on how healthy Edgar stays (umm, name the guy who is going to take the 150 AB's Edgar is invariably going to miss, by the way), but it really won't have much to do with today's moves. Yes, this acquisition further proves that Bill Bavasi has no ability to judge talent or balance a budget, but that case was rested long ago, and the prosecution is preparing its presentation for sentencing now. But it probably doesn't cost the 2004 Mariners anything, and there's no future commitment. In a year, Aurilia probably walks, Santiago gets non-tendered, and the Tigers won't re-sign Guillen as a free agent. This is a basically meaningless trade between directionless franchises that won't have any real impact on the future of either." (U.S.S. Mariner)

How I Remember Josh Beckett. Ryan Levy: "I speak to you as one of a very few. I am one of 30 high school kids who got a hit off of Josh Beckett during his senior year. After seeing Josh achieve success at a much higher level than District 21-5A in the state of Texas, I thought people might be interested in hearing what I remember about Josh from his high school days." (Aaron's Baseball Blog)

Thursday, January 08, 2004
My Own Private Cooperstown. "For as little as $5 per year,, the leading online compendium of baseball statistics, will sell you a sponsorship of one of its player Web pages (pages for superstars can cost as much as $200). In return, users can post a brief mash note above the career numbers of their favorite player in baseball history. What has emerged as a result is one of the great democratic blossomings of the Web: a collection of personal baseball testimonials. Taken together, the messages form not an online Hall of Fame but something more like a Hall of Love." (Slate)

The New Face of Evil, Part One. "The difference between the Yankees team that lost the World Series last season and the Yankees team that will win the World Series in 2004 is dramatic, and if you were a fan that stopped paying attention after Game Six and didn't hear anything about the team until Spring Training, the turnover in the roster would be jolting." (Replacement Level Yankees Weblog)

Wednesday, January 07, 2004
Molitor, Eckersley elected to Hall of Fame. (Yahoo!)

Alomar takes huge cut to $1 million with Arizona. (Yahoo!)

Rob Neyer: "If you're making me decide today, I have to pick the Twins to win [the AL Central] again, with the White Sox right behind. But it's January 2004 and the Royals are most certainly contenders, if they acquire Gonzalez (or another productive outfielder). Yes, they're fortunate to play in MLB's worst division. But they're also fortunate to have an owner willing to spend some money and a general manager who knows how to spend it." (

Tuesday, January 06, 2004
Vazquez agrees to $45 million, four-year contract with Yankees. (Yahoo!)

Mariners trade Cirillo to San Diego for three players. Pitcher Kevin Jarvis, catcher Wiki Gonzalez and infielder Dave Hansen. (Yahoo!)

Royals lead the chase for Juan Gonzalez. They're close to a one-year, $4 million deal. (The Mercury News)

Derek Milhous Zumsteg: "This seemingly brings to the count of better outfielders who signed cheaper deals than Raul [Ibanez] to 42." (U.S.S. Mariner)

Former relief pitcher Tug McGraw dead at 59. (Yahoo!)

Paul Hagen: "The most amazing thing about the amazing life of the amazingly lefthanded Frank Edwin 'Tug' McGraw might just be this: He was beloved by both Phillies and Mets fans. That's a record that might never be broken." (Philadelphia Daily News)

Rose admits he bet on baseball. (San Francisco Chronicle)

David Cameron: "Rose is a scumbag lying weasel who has spent the past 10 years assailing the character of men who were telling the truth. Now, when it interests him financially and potentially leads to reinstatement, he's willing to say he was lying for the past decade and hope that we don't mind. There's absolutely no reason to put Pete Rose in the Hall of Fame, and I hope he never gets to enter Cooperstown, even if he tries to buy a ticket from a scalper." (U.S.S. Mariner)

Friday, January 02, 2004
A Rich transaction for Mariners? "According to a well-placed source, Seattle is close to signing shortstop Rich Aurilia...who hit .277 with 13 home runs and 58 RBIs for the San Francisco Giants last season, to a one-year, $4 million contract. The deal is contingent on the Mariners being able to trade Carlos Guillen, who recently agreed to a one-year, $2.5 million contract. The Mariners would have to eliminate Guillen's salary to make Aurilia's $4 million fit within their 2004 budget." (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

Derek Milhous Zumsteg: "Both [Aurilia and Carlos Guillen], statistically and scouting-wise, are average defenders at their position. Carlos, injury-hampered, has been adding power, then OBP, then power, and at 28 if he's healthy (yes, I know) there's a fair chance he'll put together a full season where he hits really well. Like .285/.370/.420 or better. And that's probably going to beat what Aurilia puts up here. What's the upgrade? Why make this move?" (U.S.S. Mariner)

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