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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pickoff Moves

Dodgers Near A Guillermo Mota Reunion

Heart? Soul? Wingman? Whatever, the Dodgers are in talks to bring back former eighth-inning reliever Guillermo Mota.

A Three Days Of Cryin' Comment About The Register's Jeff Miller

Just so:
No amount of side-stepping, inapt analogies, or hogwash ”anonymous” quotes will return whatever credibility Miller may have enjoyed previously.
You wonder whether that Miller's piece on Francisco Rodriguez's departure, which accused Angels fans of overt racism, was just written to make sure people were reading. (I guess I failed the test...)

MSTI Puts Words In Ned's Mouth — And They're Delicious!

Ned's letter to Scott Boras shows just why MSTI, at its peak, transcends this mortal plane. Sample:

But Scott, I'm not writing to talk about the crimes you've committed against humanity. As you may or may not have noticed: the economy's in the dumper. People who are losing their homes have no patience for a petulant child's whining about millions of dollars he clearly doesn't even need. On top of that, your usual "ooooh! there's a mystery team!" crowing just doesn't play here. Twenty-five or so of the MLB teams can't even pretend to afford Manny. Of the ones that can, I'd say it's pretty safe that Boston's not interested, even the Yankees seem to have reached the end of their checkbook (not to mention they have far too many old "outfielders" as it is), the Angels are stocked in the outfield and have publicly declared Manny will never play for them, the Mets don't seem to be in play, and what, are you really going to send Manny to Washington just because Jim Bowden lusts after outfielders?

"But, the Giants!" you begin to say, before I cut you off. Come on. Stop with that. Just because Jon Heyman's either on your payroll or completely deluded doesn't make it true. (Seriously, what is with that guy? I can't even count the amount of sportswriters who are refuting his claims, yet he continues to crow about how he's "confirmed" the discussions. I can't wait for his new book, No Really: I've Confirmed WMD in Iraq!) The Giants are at their payroll limits, already have too many old and busted outfielders, and you'd think they've had their fill of controversal old left fielders, no? What does that leave? That's right. It leaves us.

Dodgers Thought About Voiding Andruw Jones' Contract

The Dodgers apparently thought about trying to void Andruw Jones' contract on the basis of standard language in the Basic Agreement (PDF, section 3(a) in particular):
According to the sources, the Dodgers suggested to the commissioner's office and the players' union that they explored their contractual right to terminate the deal of any player who "shall at any time fail, refuse or neglect . . . to keep himself in first-class physical condition or to obey the club's training rules."

Such action would immediately have been contested by the players' union. The sources said they could not recall any instance of an arbitrator ruling that a player had to forfeit any part of a guaranteed contract under such circumstances.

What's the point of having those words in there if the owners don't have the courage to get them enforced in a case where it's obviously applicable? Seriously, what's the worst that happens? If they lose, they're at the status quo ante, and if they win, they get an important precedent. Why not go for it?

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High praise from a respected source! Thanks, Rob.

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