Harden's Rangers deal finalized

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The Dallas Morning News has all of the details on Rich Harden’s deal with the Rangers, which was agreed to Wednesday.
According to the DMN, Harden will earn $6.5 million next season and up to $2.5 million more incentives. The 2011 option needs approval from both sides and is worth $11million. If either party declines it, Harden will receive $1 million, meaning the deal is worth a guaranteed $7.5 million. Harden could earn as much as $20 million over the two years.
However, there’s very little chance that Harden will pitch under the terms of the mutual option in 2011. For the Rangers to pick up their side, they’d need to value Harden at $10 million, and if the general feeling after the season is that Harden is going to be worth $10 million in 2011, he shouldn’t have any trouble going back on the market and landing a big multiyear deal.
So, it all comes back to $7.5 million for 2009. Harden is a fine risk at that price. And if he pitches so well that the Rangers can’t afford to bring him back, they’ll have gotten more than their money’s worth and likely two picks in the 2011 draft to boot.

Keith Law: The Braves have the best farm system. Who has the worst?

PHOENIX, AZ - APRIL 06:  General manager Dave Stewart of the Arizona Diamondbacks laughs on the field before the Opening Day MLB game against the San Francisco Giants at Chase Field on April 6, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Why is this man smiling? Man, I wouldn’t be smiling if I read what I just read.

This is the week when ESPN’s Keith Law releases his prospect and farm system rankings. He kicks off his content this week with a top-to-bottom ranking of all 30 farm systems. As a rule he limits his analysis to players who are currently in the minors and who have not yet exhausted their rookie of the year eligibility.

For the second straight year, Law ranks the Braves as the best system in baseball. Number two — making a big leap from last year’s number 13 ranking – is the New York Yankees. Dead last: the Arizona Diamondbacks, which Law says “Dave Stewart ritually disemboweled” over the past two years. That’s gotta hurt.

If you want to know the reasons and the rankings of everyone in between you’ll have to get an ESPN Insider subscription. Sorry, I know everyone hates to pay for content on the Internet, but Keith and others who do this kind of work put a lot of damn work into it and this is what pays their bills. I typically don’t like to pay for content myself, but I do pay for an ESPN Insider subscription. It’s worth it for Law’s work alone.

The Blue Jays will . . . not be blue some days next year

blue jays logo
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The Toronto Blue Jays, like a lot of teams, will wear an alternate jersey next year. It’ll be for Sunday home games. They call it their “Canadiana,” uniforms. Which, hey, let’s hear it for national pride.

(question to Canada: my grandmother and my three of my four maternal great-grandparents were Canadian. Does that give me any rights to emigrate? You know, just in case? No reason for asking that today. Just curious!).

Anyway, these are the uniforms:

More like RED Jays, am I right?

OK, I am not going to leave this country. I’m going to stay here and fight for what’s right: a Major League Baseball-wide ban on all red alternate jerseys for anyone except the Cincinnati Reds, who make theirs work somehow. All of the rest of them look terrible.

Oh, Canada indeed.