Sneaking a Peek at the 2011 Hall of Fame Veteran’s Committee Ballot

by Chuck

The newly revised Baseball Hall of Fame Veterans’ Committee ballot was announced earlier this week and contained the names of a dozen former players, owners, and executives who will be considered for election to the Hall in 2011.

The primary change to the VC process was to break down the history of baseball into three categories; Expansion (1973-present), Golden Era (1947-1972), and pre-integration (1871-1946), with consideratin given to ALL eligible candidates whose main contribution to the sport came during a respective era. Under the previous VC process, four seperate Committees considered candidates seperately; one for players, one for Executives, etc.

The ballot, which will be voted upon during the upcoming December Winter Meetings in Orlando, Florida, is made up of eight former players, three executives and one manager. Any candidate receiving a minimum of 75% of the vote from the sixteen member voting panel will be announced publicly on December sixth and enshrined along with any BBWAA electee during Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies in July, 2011.

The 16 member voting panel is made up of a number of Hall of Fame players Johnny Bench, Eddie Murray, Frank Robinson, Whitey Herzog, Ryne Sandberg, Ozzie Smith, Tony Perez and Jim Palmer; major league executives Bill Giles, Andy MacPhail, David Glass and Jerry Reinsdorf, and veteran media members Tom Verducci, Bob Elliott, Ross Newhan and Tim Kirkjian.

The Candidates:

Vida Blue: A seventeen year veteran who posted a 209-161 record with the A’s, Royals, and Giants, 1971 AL MVP and Cy Young winner, won 18 or more games five times and was a six time All-Star. Spent just four seasons on the BBWAA ballot, receiving a high vote total of 8.7% in his second year.

Blue’s 1971 season was one of the more dominant by a pitcher I can remember. Like Dwight Gooden a decade later, Blue exemplifies “what could have been”, with drug use and other off-field problems derailing what SHOULD have been a Hall of Fame career. My vote: No

Dave Concepcion: Spent his entire 19 year career at shortstop for the Cincinnati Reds and their “Big Red Machine”, won two Silver Sluggers, five Gold Gloves and was named to nine National League All-Star teams. spent 19 seasons as the Cincinnati Reds shortstop, compiling a .267 average with 2,326 hits, 321 stolen bases and two Silver Slugger Awards, along five Gold Glove Awards and nine All-Star Game selections. Spent the maximum fifteen years on the BBWAA ballot, receiving a high of 16.9% of the vote in his fourth year of eligibility.

Dave Concepcion is the Ron Santo of the 1970’s; a good player on some good teams overshadowed by more than one Hall of Fame teammate. My vote: No

Steve Garvey: Played nineteen seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres, posting a career .294 average with 2599 hits and being named to ten All-Star teeams. Posted a lifetime split of .338/11/31 in eleven postseason series, was named the NLCS MVP twice and played an NL record 1,207 consecutive games. Spent the maximum fifteen seasons on the BBWAA ballot, three times receiving more than 40% of the vote, with a high of 42.6% in his third year.

According to Baseball Reference’s career and season comparison, the most similar player to Garvey is Garrett Anderson. Enough said. My vote: No

Ron Guidry: Posted a 170-91 record over fourteen seasons, all with the New York Yankees. AL Cy Young winner in 1978 after posting one of the great pitching seasons of all-time with a 25-3 record and an ERA of 1.74 and an AL record for lefthanded pitchers nine shutouts. Spent nine years on the BBWAA ballot, receiving a high vote of 8.8%.

Knowing Yankees owner George Steinbrenner essentially blackballed Guidry for almost six years, not believing a 160 pound pitcher could throw 100 mph or could consistently win in the major leagues cost Guidry a minimum fifty wins, a total which would have him already in Cooperstown. By the way, his closest career comp on Baseball Reference? Roy Halladay. My vote: Yes.

Tommy John: Pitched 26 seasons for the Indians, Dodgers, Yankees, Angels and A’s, winning 288 games and ranking eighth on the list of career starts with 700. Despite the length of his career is likely more known today for the ligament transplant surgery which bears his name.

While the story of his surgery and comeback might someday make a good Hollywood movie, it isn’t enough to warrant HOF election. Spent the max fifteen seasons on the BBWAA ballot, receiving a high vote total of 31.7% during his final year of eligibility. My vote: No.

Al Oliver: Amassed 2,743 hits in 18 seasons while posting a .303 lifetime average playing for seven different teams. Posted career totals of 529 doubles 1,326 RBI, 1,189 runs scored, hit .300 or better ten times, including nine straight seasons from 1976-1984, a stretch made more impressive when considering he played for four different teams and saw action both leagues. Oliver was a nine time All-Star and had top five MVP finishes as an outfielder and first baseman. Spent just one season on the BBWAA ballot, receiving just 4.3% of the vote.

Why is Al Oliver on this list and Dave Parker isn’t? My vote: No

Ted Simmons: One of the more underrated and underappreciated player ever. Played twenty one seasons, posted a lifetime .285/248/1389 split, made eight All Star teams and had more RBI than Johnny Bench, scored more runs than Gary Carter, and had more hits than Yogi Berra or Carlton Fisk. Embarrassingly off the ballot with a 4.3% total after just one year on the BBWAA ballot.

One of the more egregious oversights in voting history. If it is the point of the Veteran’s Committee to right the wrongs perpetrated by the BBWAA, then Ted Simmons should be the poster child. My vote: A resounding yes.

Rusty Staub: Played twenty three seasons with several teams, including a three year stint as the marquee player for the expansion Montreal Expos from 1969-1971. Compiled 2,716 hits with a .279 average, 292 home runs, 1,466 RBI and six All-Star Game selections. His total of 2,951 big league games played ranks twelfth all time. On the BBWAA ballot seven times, with a high of 7.9%.

Staub used to come into my restaurant in Connecticut on occasion, and I got to know him a little bit.  Because of that, I used to think he was HOF worthy, but, obviously, personal opinion shouldn’t matter when voting for the Hall of Fame, although someone ought to tell that to the moron who voted for David Segui last year. My vote: No.

Pat Gillick: A General Manager for twenty seven seasons, with stops in Toronto, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Seattle. His teams posted winning records in 20 of his 27 seasons and won three World Series titles.

While I believe Gillick and Marvin Miller are both worthy of consideration, with Boss George on the ballot there just aren’t enough votes to go around. My vote: No.

Marvin Miller: Served sixteen years as the top dog of the MLBPA, within ten seasons had secured free agency for the players and was running arguably the most powerful union not only in sports but in business. With Miller at the helm, player salaries rose ten fold from when he took over and also created additional revenue streams for the owners through merchandising and advertising spots featuring players and logos.

Miller, I understand, is in failing health and possibly won’t live another four years to see his name on the ballot again, so, with that, I vote Yes.

Billy Martin: Spent sixteen seasons as a manager and eleven as a player. Managed five teams and took four of them to the postseason. Martin’s only World Series title as manager was with the 1977 Yankees, although he did win four rings as a player, also with the Yanks.

Martin’s off the field antics, both with his players and with the on again, off again, on again train ride with the Yankees was an embarrassment and in the long run did more to tarnish his name than his accomplishments as a manager enhanced it. My vote: No.

George Steinbrenner: Principal owner of the Yankees from 1973 until his recent passing earlier this year. Initially running the Yankees with the same iron fist he ran his shipbuilding company and other businesses, Steinbrenner eventually learned to put baseball people in baseball jobs and to step back and let them do their thing. Never shy about spending money and making changes when he saw fit, both on the field and elsewhere in the organization, Steinbrenner turned the Yankees into a billion dollar organization, with every other team in major league baseball benefitting financially, either directly or indirectly. During his tenure, the Yankees won eleven American League pennants and seven World Series titles. My vote: Biggest no-brainer in the history of earth, absolutely Yes.

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77 Responses to “Sneaking a Peek at the 2011 Hall of Fame Veteran’s Committee Ballot”

  1. Hossrex Says:

    Chuck… I can’t help but think, if Ron Guidry wasn’t a Yankee, and it had been someone else who’d made the whole “it wasn’t his fault he didn’t pitch more” argument… you’d be throwing around colorful language by now.

  2. Chuck Says:

    It’s not that he didn’t pitch more, it’s why.

    And being a Yankee fan and having an insider’s look, then, yes, the blackballing argument is a valid one.

    You are, however, correct in saying if that information wasn’t public, then it would be spilt milk, like with Mattingly or Dick Allen or someone else bitten by the injury or circumstance bug.

    At least I wasn’t the one who voted for David Segui.

  3. Raul Says:

    I don’t see why the Veterans Committee should have media members in it.

    The whole point of the VC seems to be to correct the monumental fuck ups that the media has made with the regular HOF voting.

  4. Chuck Says:

    Speaking of idiots and HOF votes, did I tell you guys about how I luckily just missed meeting Keith Law at the Rising Stars game?

    I had planned to meet Joe DelGrippo (who knows Law pretty well) in the press box before the game. Normally at an AFL game there’s about 8-12 guys in the PB, most of them AFL or MLB staffers. Pretty relaxed atmosphere.

    Rising Stars or Championship game is different, though. Alot of national media types come in, and it’s tough to get a seat unless you’re there an hour before game time.

    As usual, (because I have a life), I was running late, and got to the park about 45 minutes before first pitch.

    I walk into the press area, scope out the buffet, quick scan the seating area and determine there isn’t anything, so I text Joe in case he isn’t there yet that I’m heading down to the bullpen to watch Manny Banuelos warmup.

    As I’m leaving, I see these three nerdy looking guys hanging out in front of the men’s room (habit?). Turns out later, after meeting Joe, that the “Three Amigos” were Law and two nerdbags from Baseball Prospectus.

    Thankfully, by the time I got back inside, the buffet (or men’s room) freeloaders were gone.

    Whew…talking about dodging a bullet, huh?

  5. Raul Says:

    LOL Chuck

  6. Hossrex Says:

    Chuck: “It’s not that he didn’t pitch more, it’s why.”

    So… that means you’ve changed your mind, and decided that you should give Ron Santo extra credit for missing time due to diabetes… right?

    Or are you… ya know… giving bonus points to players you like, and then not for players you don’t like?

    That’s kinda weak sauce.

  7. Chuck Says:

    Number of career games missed due to diabetes for Santo:


    “So… that means you’ve changed your mind, and decided that you should give Ron Santo extra credit for missing time due to diabetes… right?”

    That IS weak sauce.

  8. Hossrex Says:

    Chuck: “Number of career games missed due to diabetes for Santo:


    This is what he has.

    You’re a dick.

  9. Chuck Says:


    Everyone knows Santo has diabetes, shithead.

    He just didn’t miss any games because of it.


    I was just making a comment to your lousy fucking research and you’re weakass attempt at getting under my skin.


  10. Raul Says:


    Chuck missed 4 games as a senior in high school to Tourettes.

  11. Chuck Says:

    I miss Shaun..

  12. JohnBowen Says:

    I tend to support Tommy John. Career-wise, he’s a little short. But combined with the fact that he was the first person and namesake of Tommy John Surgery puts him over the top (sorta like Candy Cummings, except with a much better career).

    Fun Fact: Rusty Staub is the only player in history to have 500 hits with four different teams.

    “Why is Al Oliver on this list and Dave Parker isn’t? My vote: No”

    Dave Parker is still eligible to be voted in by the BBWAA for another year.
    Al Oliver has the interesting distinction of winning three consecutive silver sluggers at three different positions from 1980-1982 (OF, DH, 1B).

    Totally right about Simmons. I can’t believe he was overlooked.

  13. Cameron Says:

    For the record, I have NO idea why Santo ins’t in the hall of fame. Absolutely zero fucking clue and have seen no argument that I’ve found remotely satisfactory to keep him out.

  14. Hartvig Says:

    I have little sympathy for either Parker or Oliver missing out on the HOF because they did it to themselves. I know we were all young and stupid once but they have no one to blame but themselves.

    I agree with all of Chuck’s assessments (of the eligible candidates anyways, I would vote for Santo if he were eligible) except maybe Guidry. Looking at his minor league numbers I’d say it’s fair to say he should have been up at least 1 season earlier than he was and you could easily argue that he didn’t need a full season each at low & high A ball so maybe he should have been up 2 years earlier. I’ll admit I never saw him pitch in the minors and really don’t remember seeing him at all before 78 and I’m sure Chuck saw way more of him than most of us did so he’s probably right in saying he should have been up even earlier than that. But a lot of players lost time in the minors. Duke Snider probably should have been in the majors a year or 2 earlier. Same with Harmon Killebrew. George McQuinn absolutely eviscerated minor league pitching for 8 years stuck behind Lou Gehrig. Jim Gentile was stuck behind Gil Hodges for at least 3 years. I think it’s fair to give them some credit for it but it’s hard to know how much. And Guidry is close, even without it. He’s one of the guys I probably wouldn’t vote for but would defend this selection if he got in. I will grant you this: if you adjust for the differences in era’s in which they played, even without the time he spent in the minors, he’s at least as deserving as Dizzy Dean, probably more so.

    And Mike, sorry I didn’t include you in my earlier comment about us cool people with avatars.

  15. Mike Felber Says:

    Hey, that is O.K. Hartvig I jus’ happened to see it suggested on & got The (Big) Train rolling. I agree w/most of Chuck’s choices.

    Santo had the peak to justify admission. Gator? Only if he could have been dominant for several years before the majors. Gehrig & Grove had similar issues, but obviously were amongst the best ever. John I would give it to due to the additive value4 of the ground breaking surgery.

    No need to scold either of the 2 interlocutors above-they are at worst frienemies ( a word i thought i had made up, but alas no), a rare case where mutual abuse engendered respect. But I do agree that if a player was PREVENTED from playing y outside forces like war, that is distinct from an unfortunate injury or diabetes. Ironically Chuck is on the exact same page as Bill James in this regard.

    I am conflicted about Steinbrenner. He was abusive, humiliating, made many bad decisions too, drove away good people, & wasted resources too. And was twice banned from baseball, & got off/back in easy each time. I cannot let personal feelings interfere with a rational assessment w/his huge impact on baseball, but things related to baseball are very relevant, literally in the bylaws & common sense wise, to HOF candidacy. Buying teams-& what he did compared to what he could have-is not so great, but he undoubtedly changed the game greatly.

    There is no such ambiguity about Miller, the biggest no-brainer. Those are the only selections of Chuck’s I quibble with.

  16. Cameron Says:

    Boss pissed off just about everybody in the sport, but he made the Yankees so big a powerhouse and was so memorable there’s pretty much no way he doesn’t get voted in.

  17. Hossrex Says:

    Chuck: “He just didn’t miss any games because of it.”

    Seriously… seriously seriously… you don’t understand how much of an asshole you sound like right now?

  18. Raul Says:

    Ron Guidry not pitching more because George Steinbrenner refused to bring him up to the majors, and Ron Santo potentially missing games because of diabetes is not even close to being the same thing. Especially considering that Santo willfully kept the disease a secret.

    Not including his rookie season (when Santo played 95 games), Santo averaged 159 games per season from ages 21-31. He went on to play 133 games at age 32, 149 games at age 33, and 117 games at age 34, then was out of the game.

    Exactly how many games did he miss due to diabetes?

  19. Cameron Says:

    I think Chuck means he didn’t miss anything in season, and I agree with him. He probably did lose seasons where he could’ve played when he was 35-39, maybe even later. But I don’t think he sounds like an asshole, and I have quite a few diabetics in my family.

  20. Raul Says:

    Santo had a 15 season career. He’s fucking 12th on the all-time games played by a third baseman list. He ranks even higher if you take into account players that were primarily 3B-men for their careers.

    I’m supposed to believe his major league career was fucked by diabetes? I’m not buying it. I don’t care how much of an asshole that makes me.

  21. Cameron Says:

    His career wasn’t shot, maybe cut a few seasons short, but not completely shot.

  22. Raul Says:

    Maybe, Cameron.

    But he’s probably a HOF anyway. That’s what I hate. A player is denied the HOF because they didn’t pad their careers with mediocre/bad numbers?

  23. Cameron Says:

    Maybe, but even the raw numbers as it is are pretty damn impressive, and hey, Joe DiMaggio only made the Hall in 13 with numbers Albert Pujols put up in 9.

  24. Chuck Says:

    “Seriously… seriously seriously… you don’t understand how much of an asshole you sound like right now?”


    Care to explain?

    And before you do, understand Santo himself said he never missed a game due to his diabetes.

    Take your time…

  25. Hartvig Says:

    I would guess that based on the treatment available at the time for diabetes (especially the lack of blood glucose testing) that it’s reasonable that Santo’s career may have been cut short by the diabetes. I also agree that it’s not the same as being stuck in the minors by circumstances beyond the players control but I do think it’s reasonable to factor into a players overall evaluation. Should we put Pete Reiser in the HOF because Leo Durocher thought he was better than Mays? Of course not. The same thing would apply to Smokey Joe Wood, Herb Score, Tony Conigliaro and several others. It’s fun to speculate how good they could have been but you can never know for sure. But I think at a certain point it’s acceptable to at least give SOME credit for what might have been: Dizzy Dean. Sandy Koufax. Kirby Puckett. If there numbers are right on the border- and here I’m in agreement with Raul that it’s what a player does at his peak that matters most- then I think you can give some weight to what might have been. If Sandy Koufax was the best pitcher in baseball for 5 or 6 years that puts him in a pretty small and really select group of pitchers already. If you add the what might have been factor, along with his performance in the World Series, the strikeout records, the Cy Young awards, how he did in the MVP voting and everything else I think it helps make a reasonable argument. I would give the most weight to players who lost time due to the war or military service (DiMaggio,Feller,Rizzuto,Williams) than anything, then to players like Guidry who were held back in the minors due to circumstances beyond their control and least to players who had an injury. But I think it’s fair to make it a part of the argument.

    I think even without any additional credit Santo belongs in the HOF but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to say that absent the diabetes he MIGHT have played an additional season or 2.

  26. Hartvig Says:

    Chuck- I guess he would be the one to know best but my cousin who was about 10 years younger than Santo died at 50 due to kidney failure brought on by diabetes and a friend of mine from high school (who would be about 15 years younger) had her leg amputated at the knee a couple of years ago. The urine glucose testing available at the time was highly inaccurate and getting your insulin dosed correctly was almost impossible. I find it pretty amazing that he was able to keep it from the public for all those years. Playing in St. Louis in July in 100 degree heat it’s a miracle he never went into hypoglycemic shock on the field. He must be one tough SOB.

  27. Chuck Says:

    My father in law passed away a couple of weeks ago at age 88.

    He was a full fledged diabetic at 12 years old and never had any health related issues, kidney failure, dialysis, nothing, right up until a week before he died when his pancreas, and not his kidneys, began to fail.

    Each person is different.

    Santo missed no games during his career due to his diabetes. Santo said he hid it the best he could because, unlike today, there was no union to protect him and he feared for his job.

  28. Cameron Says:

    Santo never went into shock because he kept snacks like sandwiches and cookies, and of course Pizza, in the dugout. Kinda cool actually.

  29. brautigan Says:

    Chuck: I have to agree with most of your assessments (except I cannot stomach Steinbrenner) and I cannot for the life of me understand why you would include Guidry. Guidry really didn’t do anything in the minors to make anyone want to include him on the major league club until his age 24 season, and even then, New York had Sparky Lyle and Tippy Martinez in the bullpen (Guidry was a reliever in 1975 and 1976 and was so lousy as a starter in 1974 that West Haven made him a reliever). So, if you were going to claim that Edgar Martinez missed games because he couldn’t field and therefore should not be in the hall, well, the knife cuts both ways. Guidry was a damn fine pitcher for about 4 to 6 seasons, and in 1978 dominated like Sandy Koufax, but I just don’t see Louisiana Lightening as a hall of famer. Sorry.

  30. ThomasWayne Says:

    My only problem with the Guidry admission is that if he actually gets admitted it just means that about 25 other guys have been seriously overlooked. Better pitchers with better numbers…at least in my humble opinion.

    His admission wouldn’t bother me..Iv’e been on record numerous times in stating that the HOF is way to over exclusive….letting in the next best 40 or 50 players wouldn’t water down the hall (there are plenty of guys already in who probably don’t deserve to be) and you would still be excluding over 99% of players who ever played. The top one percent…or possibly 1 and a half percent in the hall? Why not? Its not like that will ever make someone like Mike Marshall (the OFer notthe Pitcher…hell…even the pitcher for that matter) who was a good player but not much more a Hall of Famer. So what if someone like Dewey Evans or Don Mattingly makes the hall…its not like they weren’t truly great players…and like I said…you’d still exclude between 98 and 99 percent of the rest of everyone who ever played.

    On the Simmons front I have but one thing to say….if he gets in…BOUT GOD DAMN TIME!!!

    Simmons should have made it in on one of his first 10 ballots. The idiots who didn’t vote him should all be stripped of a vote…which virtually means all of them.

    Look at the other catchers in the hall and look at Simmons. He’s smack dab right there with all of them on the numbers front. Even if you add in the numbers of folks like Piazza and Pudge Rodriguez he’d still be looking good.

    Sadly…this man should have been a HOF a long time ago…I just hope the other veterans agree with Chuck and his assessment.

  31. Raul Says:

    No Thomas.

    Guidry’s admission doesn’t mean other guys have to get in at all.

  32. Chuck Says:

    Guidry is sentimental, nothing more, nothing less.

    As I stated, my voting for him is based on personal reasons, not necessarily performance.

    Sorry, Braut, your Martinez reference doesn’t hold water.

  33. Hossrex Says:

    Chuck: “My father in law passed away a couple of weeks ago”

    Sorry man. This has been a really tough year for your family. I hope your wife is holding together as best as possible.

  34. Chuck Says:

    Thanks, Rex.

    Yeah, she lost both parents six months apart. Holidays are going to be rough.

  35. Hartvig Says:

    ROY vote is in.

    Posey & Feliz with Heyward & Jackson as runnerups.

  36. Bob Says:

    No issues with the writers, although I was hoping Jackson would win .

  37. Bob Says:

    And the Red Sox claimed Taylor Bucholz off waivers. GM meetings start tomorrow.

  38. Bob Says:

    The Phillies and Jose Contreas agreed to a 2 year deal worth 5.5 million.

  39. Bob Says:

    Ryne Sandberg is going to manage the Phillies Triple-A squad.

  40. Cameron Says:

    Would’ve voted Heyward, but no real complaints, it was a coin-flip race this year. Most of them are this year, gotta love that.

  41. Cameron Says:

    It seems that Dan Uggla will want a contract in the 5 year, 60-million range after his trade or that’s what it’ll take to keep him in Florida. Would you offer it to him? I would if he would agree to move to first or third if/when his defense starts to decline. The bat’s worth keeping him.

  42. Hossrex Says:

    Cameron: “Would you offer it to him?”

    Adam Dunn can’t find work… and Uggla is likely going to get more than 10 million per year?

    Strange world.

  43. Cameron Says:

    Adam Dunn can find work pretty easy, he’s just waiting for someone dumb enough to let him play the field or he’ll cave and DH. He can easily fetch 10+ million, he won’t be like Sheffield or Dye and will sit a season out because he won’t have his demands met, not at his age and with his ability.

    Dunn will probably fetch… I’d say 12-15 mil a year, 3 to 4 years.

  44. brautigan Says:


    Sorry about you and your family’s loss. IT does make for a tough holiday season. Best to you and yours.

  45. Hossrex Says:

    Cameron: “Dunn will probably fetch… I’d say 12-15 mil a year, 3 to 4 years.”

    I agree. I think that’s entirely fair… but using your logic (which I agree with), explain Adam Dunn signing for 20 million over 2 years in 2008… with arguably the worst franchise in baseball.

    Not take in account that the economy is WORSE now than it was two years ago, and Adam Dunn is two years older.

    I’ve never heard anyone explain Dunn’s 2008 contract to my satisfaction. My only supposition is that everyone knows Dunn was/is a steroid user, and no one wants to be attached to a guy like that, just in case a scandal forms.

    Otherwise… a guy who’s hit almost 300 homeruns in the last seven seasons? The phrase “criminally underpaid” comes to mind.

  46. Cameron Says:

    I dunno, Dunn only lost about 2-3 HR a year in Washington and I haven’t heard his name connected to any steroids. Dunn entered the same FA class as Mark Teixeira though, he wasn’t the top dog in that class and didn’t have the room to ask for a bigger salary. I dunno, he’s in a better position to ask now and… I dunno, I’d say he was underpaid in Washington and I guess I really can’t justify it despite my rambling. Still, 4 years 60 mil seems like about the most I’d give him.

    Also, I think that Washington’s getting in on the bidding for Dan Uggla. That means a 3-4-5 of Zimmerman, Dunn, and Uggla. Damn.

  47. John Says:

    I dunno about Dunn and steroids, but I think the reason for Dunn’s contract wasn’t the state of the economy but the state of certainty. The bottom fell out and no one knew what was going to happen. The economy’s gotten a whole lot worse in the last two years, but at least there’s some sense of stability, unlike the off-season during which Dunn was signed (right after a global economic collapse, nothing was certain). Then again, the Yankees spent the friggin GDP of all of Africa on three players that same off-season so who knows.

    Another thing about Dunn: Would you rather sign a 3-4 year deal and make 50 million, or maybe build up your stock for a couple years and THEN sign that 3-4 year deal for a little more? Is that even a possibility? Has anyone actually ever done that? Seems feasible.

  48. Bob Says:

    The Reds re-signed Ramon Hernadez. I believe Chuck wrote that he would be a decent pick-up for the Yankees for a year or two.

  49. Chuck Says:

    I heard last night the starting point for Uggla is Chase Utley (5 years, $78 mil).

    There’s no way I’d give Uggla more than ten million, maybe twelve, tops. He is such a liability outside the batters’ box he’s not worth it.

    Although I did hear today there are some teams looking at him with the intent to make him a third baseman. His bat already plays well at third, and his glove might play a bit better there.

    The economy’s worse today than two years ago?

    Oh, wait, I forgot, Rex lives in California. Gas is SEVENTY cents cheaper here in Phoenix than it is in San Diego.

    Dunn’s going to cash in big, probably $15 mil a year over three or four.

    Why the hell would the Phillies, or anyone else for that matter, give Jose Contreras anything more than bus fare?

  50. Chuck Says:

    Bob, I went and saw the Sox prospects in the AFL again today, and I have to tell you, if what they sent here is the best they have, you guys are in deep doodoo.

    Ryan Lavarnway is one of the worst catchers I’ve ever seen.

  51. Chuck Says:

    I didn’t know one of Jose Tabata’s relatives was in the BBWAA?

    Seriously, he got a vote and Stanton didn’t?

  52. Cameron Says:

    Contreras wasn’t too terrible out of the pen this year. As for Uggla, believe it or not, Toronto wants him too and both Aaron Hill and Jose Bautista said they’d be willing to move to third to make room for Uggla.

    That either means they’re moving Hill or Uggla to the outfield or Hill to third. Headscartching commences.

  53. Chuck Says:

    Or they can just move Uggla to third.

    Which makes more sense, because as a second baseman, he blows.

  54. Raul Says:

    I think Toronto is on its way to having enough hitting to win games. They don’t need Uggla. I’d take the defense at 2nd.

  55. Cameron Says:

    He’s one of the worst second basemen I’ve ever seen, I remember the 09 ASG where he made 3 errors, that was a disaster. I’d like to see them make a push for Uggla, they have the talent and it’d show a committment to winning. With the way Boston is looking and Tampa’s loss of Crawford and Pena and other factors, they could easily make a wildcard push with Uggla and a more matured pitching staff next year.

  56. Hartvig Says:

    2011 NL ROY- Aroldis Chapman

    With all the hype I’m surprised he didn’t pick up a few votes this year. I’m starting to get a little annoyed with closers winning ROY.

  57. Chuck Says:

    I think we might start seeing a changing of the guard in the AL East next year.

    The Rays are going to suck, with their $50 million payroll and all;

    The Red Sox’ catching situation is worse than the Yankees’, they have no third baseman, no shortstop, a 40 year old centerfielder, a malcontent leftfielder, and two All Stars coming off season ending injuries.

    The Yankees have no catcher, they’re old, and they have no pitching.

    I’m with Raul, the Jays should spend their free agent budget on pitching, with their offense it won’t take much to seriously contend next year.

    As it is, they won, what, 86 games this season?

    2011 season prediction #2 (writing these down, John?)..Jose Bautista doesn’t hit half of this year’s HR total.

  58. Chuck Says:

    “I’m starting to get a little annoyed with closers winning ROY.”

    And, yet, you picked a closer to win ROY next year?

  59. Hartvig Says:

    It’s a prediction not who I’d vote for.

  60. Cameron Says:

    Even if Jose hits only 20-25 next year, it still won’t be too bad. From what I’ve seen about Jose’s swing though, it’s not off bat speed, he’s just able to put all of his weight into a mammoth power swing. I don’t say he’ll repeat that, but I see him as a 30 homer guy with how much force he puts in the bat, it’s pure strength.

    I’d still like to see them trade for Uggla. They could do that and still spend on pitching pretty easily, Florida wants a pitcher and a catcher for Uggla, so they’d part with one of the metric tons of pitchers they have and… I wouldn’t give up Arrencibia, but I know Toronto has another catcher in the minors that isn’t bad, so they could do it and still shore up the pitching staff.

  61. Chuck Says:

    As deep as this year’s class was, next year’s might be just the opposite.

    I mean, how many really, really good rookies were there this year, especially in the National League?

    Without looking (or thinking), next year’s crop should be;

    Chapman, Domonic Brown, Danny Espinosa, Scott Cousins, maybe Mat Gamel, Brandon Belt (if the Giants don’t resign Huff), Todd Frazier…

  62. JohnBowen Says:

    “2011 season prediction #2 (writing these down, John?)..Jose Bautista doesn’t hit half of this year’s HR total.”

    I had that one written down months ago, and I’ll gladly take you up on that.

    “I didn’t know one of Jose Tabata’s relatives was in the BBWAA?

    Seriously, he got a vote and Stanton didn’t?”

    You’re right, that makes no sense. I mean, I didn’t have Stanton in my top-3, but he could’ve out-slugged Tabata hitting Jim Abbot style. Oh, and Jaime Garcia got top-5.

    Dan Uggla is the new Jeff Kent. His value is predicated on how he performs at his position, but he is just awful. I would argue he is worse at 2B than Piazza ever was at catcher. And he wants Utley money? Are you kidding me?

    I do wonder if Toronto will reaffirm its commitment to Aaron Hill. Put the 2009 version of Hill on the 2010 team, and they give the Yankees a run for the WC.

  63. JohnBowen Says:

    “maybe Mat Gamel”

    If you’re talking about ROY, Gamel’s ineligible. Doug Melvin and Dumbass McMacha had him in limbo for pretty much all of 2009 but he accumulated enough at-bats to barely not be a rookie anymore. I think there’s a fair chance he starts at 1B for the Brewers next season if/when Prince is traded.

  64. Chuck Says:

    Considering he plays a premium position, Uggla might be the worst defensive player in baseball.

    Aaron Hill’s a good player coming off a bad year, so, realistically, the Jays don’t need a second baseman.

    Neither do the Yankees, Red Sox, and Orioles. The Rays might take a crack at him, but with their payroll issues can’t afford him even at ten million.

    So, that eliminates the AL East.

    Over in the Central, the Twins have money and are losing Hudson, so he might fit there. The White Sox are covered, the Royals could use him, but can they afford him? The Indians suck so bad I don’t even know who their second baseman is.

    Oakland has Ellis, Seattle, Figgy, Kendrick in LA and Kinsler in Texas.

    Realistically, there are only about four AL teams that can use a full time second baseman.

    One could guess then that most of Uggla’s AB’s could be DH at bats?

  65. Raul Says:

    I think Marcum is pretty good and Romero will hopefully improve.
    I don’t think Drabek is a front-line guy but he could be solid in the middle. If they put together some winning years, maybe sign a FA or trade some talent for an established pitcher…sort of how Texas did for Cliff Lee and see if you can ride out a wave…

  66. Hartvig Says:

    I’m actually a bit of an Uggla fan but the problem with giving him Utley money isn’t even just limited to his fielding, he’s also a year older than Utley was when he signed his contract.

    There’s actually a remote possibility Detroit could wind up with Uggla, Dunn and Martinez next year. There’s at least a possibility Dunn might have to put on a glove and play some outfiield. That could get ugly real fast.

  67. Chuck Says:

    I initially guessed V-Mart going to Detroit if only because the Tigers seem to be the only team willing to match his demand of five years, however, I’ve heard he may follow his buddy Cliff Lee to Texas.

    I haven’t heard any Dunn to Detroit rumors and don’t see him fitting there, I still say he probably ends up in either Boston or Baltimore.

  68. Chuck Says:

    Baseball America came out with their Royals Top Ten Prospect List today, Cameron.

    Moustakas wasn’t first.

    He wasn’t second, either.

    1. Eric Hosmer, 1b
    2. Wil Myers, c
    3. Mike Moustakas, 3b
    4. John Lamb, lhp
    5. Mike Montgomery, lhp
    6. Christian Colon, ss
    7. Danny Duffy, lhp
    8. Chris Dwyer, lhp
    9. Aaron Crow, rhp
    10. Brett Eibner, of

  69. Cameron Says:

    “The Indians suck so bad I don’t even know who their second baseman is.”

    Luis Valbuena, I think.

  70. Cameron Says:

    And BA is so self-contradicting that I laugh at them sometimes. They listed Tom Collins (or whatever the reliever we got in the Ankiel and Farnsworth deal was) as the best relief prospect in the game and he’s not even in the top ten Royals prospects? Moustakas and Myers were finalists for prospect of the year and both lose out to Hosmer? CONSISTENCY PEOPLE!!!

  71. Lefty33 Says:

    “Why the hell would the Phillies, or anyone else for that matter, give Jose Contreras anything more than bus fare?”

    1. Because he was most consistent pitcher on the staff outside of the Halladay, Hamels, and Oswalt last year.

    2. If Lidge gets hurt next year, which always happens at some point in the year, Contreras can actually close unlike Madson who seems to have a mental block when he closes and sucks doing it.

    3. With the Phillies likely up close to their self-imposed salary ceiling for ‘11 they are probably going to try and back fill the pen with a greenhorn or two like a Vance Worley, Mike Schwimer, Mike Stutes, Antonio Bastardo, Mike Zagurski, etc. to help contain some cost and Contreras provides at least some stability if that experiment goes bad.

    4. Lidge has a club option for ‘12 that will never be picked up so in essence he’s a FA after ‘11 and so is Madson.

    In a worst case scenario if Madson proves too costly, he is a Boras client and at 32 he’ll be looking for his final and only big payday, Contreras could be the guy for at least part of the season until a better plan is worked out.

    Personally I think for the amount of money spent, he was a steal for Philly.

  72. Cameron Says:

    And I saw the plans for next year’s Northwest Arkansas (AA Royals) is to have the following rotation.

    John Lamb
    Mike Montgomery
    Danny Duffy
    Chris Dwyer
    Aaron Crow

    That’s our five best SP in the minors. Hosmer, Myers, and Colon might all end up there too, who knows?

  73. Chuck Says:

    Four lefties in your Double A rotation?

    Not happenin’

  74. Chuck Says:

    “Moustakas and Myers were finalists for prospect of the year and both lose out to Hosmer? CONSISTENCY PEOPLE!!”

    Fifty percent of BA’s rankings are what they are today, the other fifty percent is what they are expected to be in five years.

    Considering the numbers Moustakas put up this year, I think it’s pretty ballsy to list him third, and I applaud the BA staff for doing so.

    Usually, when you read idiots like Keith Law and that toolbox over at AOL Fanhouse, they just write shit for the sake of writing shit. The BA guys actually go watch these kids play and talk to tons of scouts and PD people.

    Someone asked the guy who wrote the rankings if Jesus Montero was in the Royals system where he would rank in the top three, and he answered, “he wouldn’t”.

  75. Cameron Says:

    “Another thing about Dunn: Would you rather sign a 3-4 year deal and make 50 million, or maybe build up your stock for a couple years and THEN sign that 3-4 year deal for a little more? Is that even a possibility? Has anyone actually ever done that? Seems feasible.”

    Vlad Guerrero kinda did that this year. He took a small-money one-year deal with Texas to show how he could perform given full time even after what last season looked like. He proceeded to kick ass and is bound to increase his last payday by a sizable margin.

  76. Bob Says:

    Chuck, I saw Lavarnway catch in the ASG and he sucked. Although he had a line-drive single. I still think Jose Iglesius will be a finn shortstop

  77. Chuck Says:

    Iglesias wasn’t impressive yesterday either. Defensively he’s OK, but he can’t hit.

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