At least the weather is nice

So a couple of weeks ago I was writing an article that will appear in Rotoworld Magazine. You’ll have to buy it to read it, but the jist is that it’s a list of predictions of things that will happen in 2009, erring on the side of the funny and absurd. In an initial draft I had a joke about the kinds of guys that will show up at spring training for the Padres that reads like the opening scenes of “Major League.” Among the misfits and former members of prison leagues I ran down, I threw in Omar Vizquel’s name because I thought it might be funny to see an ancient guy like him on such a list. Then I thought better of it because (a) I couldn’t come up with a joke; and (b) I figured that, hey, it may not be so crazy to think that he would sign with San Diego, thus ruining my joke if I had one. I took the joke out and went with something else.

Glad I did, because the joke would have been ruined:

The Padres are seeking depth at shortstop. Omar Vizquel is looking for a job, preferably, he says, in the National League West Division.

Could the two be a match?

San Diego general manager Kevin Towers said Tuesday that he hoped to have a deal in place for a shortstop by the end of the week. He has said previously that Vizquel, an 11-time Gold Glove winner, was being considered.

Not the most inspiring move in the world, but given how far out of it the Padres are likely to be this year there are worse things than signing Vizquel as long as he’s dirt cheap, which I assume he will be.

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  1. Chris H. said...

    I wonder if Omar’s doing it for the benefits.  You know…life insurance, medical coverage, pension, etc.

    When you reach a certain age, wherein you figure out that there are probably fewer days ahead of you than behind, such things start becoming important to you.

    Jamie Moyer could no doubt advise on this issue.

  2. Tom B said...

    I think you should have left the joke in; it makes it even funnier—at the expense of the incompetent Padres franchise.  Why in the world would a rebuilding franchise obtain the services of a SS on his last legs.  Why not take a shot with a youngster?  Or maybe a guy that has even the slightest bit of career rejuvenation potential?

  3. Chris H. said...

    Well it depends if you have anyone in the farm system that’s remotely close.

    If not, and if you’re rebuilding, then it doesn’t matter who you put there for now, does it?  And as Craig pointed out, Omar will likely be quite cheap.

  4. Tom B said...

    It is not necessary to have somebody in your own system.  For instance, Ronny Cedeno with Cubs is out of options this year.  Not the greatest prospect, but he is only 25, has torn up Triple-A pitching (OPS .959 in 2007 at Iowa), and is probably less expensive than Vizquel for 2009.

    The Cubs have Aaron Miles, Ryan Theriot, and Mike Fontenot as middle infielders on their roster and are trying to get more “left-handed” this offseason (Cedeno bats right-handed).  Cedeno can likely be gotten for very little in return and may even go on the waiver wire. 

    This is just one example.  There are, no doubt, other players not highly valued by their current franchise but that have some upside—more than Vizquel at least.  If a team is rebuilding, then why not take chances on guys with upside rather than a guy over the age of 40?

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