More teams pretend that they'll pony up for Aroldis Chapman

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The Tigers and the Angels are the latest reported — or at least speculated — to throw their hats into the Aroldis Chapman ring. Add their names to the Orioles, Red Sox, White Sox, Cubs, Yankees, Mets, Athletics and Cardinals.

Which is great and all, but does anyone but me think it’s silly to think that any team besides  the Yankees or the Red Sox are going to pay $40 million+ for a raw, 21 year-old guy who has never thrown a pitch in affiliated baseball? In light of the intro to my previous post I know this sounds like more of that “it’s the Yankees and Red Sox world and everyone else is just livin’ in it” talk I claim to despise, but really, who among the contenders here have (a) the means to absorb such a loss in the likely event Chapman either gets injured or flames out; or (b) has any track record taking such risks?

The Mets spend money from time to time but all signs point to at least some short term austerity on their part these days. The Tigers have spent some crazy money in recent years, but not on wild fliers like Chapman.  The A’s and Cardinals?  Please.

I suspect that there will be a press conference within the next month announcing Chapman’s signing, and I suspect that that press conference will take place in either Boston or New York.

Zack Greinke named the Dbacks’ Opening Day starter

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 21:  Pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks poses for a portrait during photo day at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on February 21, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Not a surprise, but a news item on a slow news day is a news item on a slow news day: Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo has named Zack Greinke as the club’s Opening Day starter.

Greinke’s first season with the Diamondbacks is not exactly what the club hoped for when he signed a six-year, $206.5 million deal in December of 2015. He dealt with oblique and shoulder issues while struggling to a 4.37 ERA over 26 starts. Greinke hasn’t pitched yet this spring, but will make his spring debut on Friday. He and the club are obviously hoping for a quiet March and a strong beginning to the season.

Either for its own sake or to increase the trade value of a player who was acquired by the previous front office regime.

“La Vida Baseball,” celebrating Latino baseball, launches

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A new website has launched. It’s called “La Vida Baseball,” and it’s all about celebrating the past, present and future of Latino baseball from a Latino perspective.

The site, produced in partnership with the Hall of Fame, has four general areas of focus:

  • Who’s Now: Focusing on current Latino players;
  • Who’s Next: Focusing on top prospects here, in the Caribbean and in Central and South America;
  • Our Life: Off-the-Field stuff, including player’s lives, lifestyles and hobbies; and
  • Our Legends: Focusing on Latino baseball history, Hall of Famers and overlooked players.

As the site has just launched there aren’t yet a ton of stories up there, but there is one about Roberto Clemente, another about Felix Hernandez and some other stuff.

The site is much-needed. Baseball reporters for American outlets are overwhelmingly white, non-Spanish speakers. Reporters, who, generally, gravitate to the players who are the most like they are. Which is understandable on some level. When you’re writing stories about people you need to be able to communicate with them and relate to them on more than a mere perfunctory level. As such, no matter how good the intentions of baseball media, we tend to see the clubhouse and the culture of baseball from a distinctly American perspective. And we tend to paint Latino players with a broad, broad brush.

La Vida Baseball will, hopefully, remedy all of that and will, hopefully, give us a fresh and insightful depiction Latino players and their culture.