The big news yesterday was that trade talks between the Red Sox and the Rockies fizzled, following in the footsteps of Alex Rodriguez to Boston, Roger Clemens to Boston (last year) and Manny Ramirez. As the poster by the handle Stately, Plump Buck Mulligan theorizes in this Baseball Think Factory thread, could it be that the Boston front office regularly gets into these high profile trade talks to stay in the papers? Or does Theo Epstein just have a fetish for complicated, big money deals, like Ed Wade loved middle relievers or Billy Beane loved three team trades?
Helton Deal Much Ado About Nothing – The Todd Helton to Boston talks broke down yesterday, reportedly after the Red Sox wouldn’t budge on sending promising young relievers Manny Delcarmen and Craig Hansen to Colorado along with veterans Mike Lowell and Julian Tavarez. If the Rockies were really going to pay half of Helton’s remaining $90.1 million on Helton’s salary, it’s hard to see why a rich team like the Red Sox wouldn’t pull the trigger—they can always buy more relievers.
Evil Empire Looks East – The Yankees will be sending coaches, scouts and trainers to help develop baseball in mainland China, primarily by working with the national team. After getting pounded in the World Baseball Classic, they could probably use the help, especially with the 2008 Olympics in Beijing (and a possible matchup against their cross-strait rivals) looming.
Royals Could Use the Help – There’s a minor controversy down in Kansas City, where the Royals want to use public funds to pay for a swanky new video room at Kauffman Stadium. The fact that a baseball team wants to screw over the local taxpayers is nothing new, but what’s really interesting is rare look into how Major League teams scout and prepare for the opposition.
Billy Beane Talks to AN – Athletics Nation is one of the best blogs out there, and is currently featuring an exclusive interview with A’s general manager Billy Beane, who reflects on last season’s first round breakthrough and talks about his expectations for the coming year.
TINSTAAPP – The Marlins were one of baseball’s best stories last season, so it the fact that young hurlers Josh Johnson and Anibal Sanchez have been complaining about arm soreness and won’t be ready to pitch at the beginning of Spring Training is a shame. The good news is that so far, the words being used are more along the lines of “precaution” and “not serious,” as opposed to “Dr. James Andrews” and “Tommy John surgery,” but the situation bears watching.
Bonds and Giants Hug It Out – Barry Bonds finally signed a contract with the Giants yesterday more than a month after the two sides reached an agreement. The sticking point? The Giants will no longer pay for Bonds’ “entourage” of trainers and assistants or let them accompany Bonds into the locker room or clubhouse. Of course, any public goodwill they could earn by taking a stand, such as it is, is dampened by the fact that they did those things in the first place.
In For a Schilling, In For a Pound – Curt Schilling announced his intention to pitch during the 2008 season, raising the question of how Fox could possibly comply with Federal Election Commission rules on equal airtime for candidates in an election.
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