Let’s see what the blogosphere is saying about Andre Dawson’s selection — and everyone else’s exclusion — from the Hall of Fame:
- Jonah Keri: “Yes, it’s ridiculous that worthy inductees like Roberto Alomar, Barry Larkin, Bert Blyleven, Edgar Martinez, Alan Trammell, Mark McGwire and of course Tim Raines didn’t get in. But still: Expo #2, Andre Dawson, is going to the Hall of Fame! I’m buying first round of beers at Ommegang. See you at the Coop!”
- Goat Riders of the Apocalypse: “[Dawson’s] 867 games as a Cub are dwarfed by his 1,443 games in Montreal. And
although he hit only 51 fewer homeruns in 2,366 fewer at bats, despite
having the best years of his career in Chicago, Cooperstown will put an
Expos cap on his plaque. I’m okay with that. I’m just glad he’s there. And hopefully come
this summer I will be in Cooperstown too, along with thousands of other
Cub fans, bowing to Dawson again and chanting his name.”
- Drunk Jays Fans: “Today, Andre Dawson was considered by people whose job it is to cover
baseball, to be more deserving of the greatest honour a baseball player
can receive than Roberto Alomar,
Bert Blyleven and Mark McGwire. This is fu**ing dumb.”
- Rob Neyer: “After all these years, I shouldn’t be surprised anymore by Hall of Fame voters. Today I was.
I didn’t know how many players would be elected. I figured at least one, but probably two and possibly three.
Well, it was one. And not the one I would have guessed.”
- Amazin Avenue: “The failure of the BBWAA to recognize the value of actual performance
while masking their own smug ignorance — and in some cases bitter
intransigence — behind the blustery veil of tired rhetoric and logic
fallacies never ceases to amaze me.”
- Pete Abraham # 1: “More BBWAA embarrassment . Our system is broken. Too many dopes who don’t really cover the game vote.“
- Pete Abraham # 2: “The BBWAA has
issues, no doubt. Too many people vote. But many of those ripping it
today either begged to get in or are still begging.”
- Charles Pierce: “The only good thing about this year’s election is that the sole
inductee, Andre Dawson, only had a OBP as high as .360 once in his
career. Any defeat for the sports-as-math-homework crowd is a good one.
Elsewhere, well, let’s just all agree that Bert Blyleven has about the
same chance of ever getting in as Mark McGwire and I do. The reasons
why are murky, which is another reason why this whole process–and many
of the participants in it–needs a high-colonic. And anyone who sent in
a blank ballot should be a subject of mockery and derision all the days
of their lives. What, these guys couldn’t find a bartender who wanted
- Big League Stew: “I mean, c’mon. Can’t the BBWAA just round up on Blyleven? If he were a
car or a house and we were buying him, sure, we’d want to knock a
percentage point off the interest rate because it would be in our best
interest as a consumer.”
- Josh Wilker: “But let’s face it, today for baseball fans is a day set aside for
outrage, more or less. It’s the day when the game itself is in some
ways defined, and those who didn’t get to participate in the defining
(and plenty who did) get to rail against the parts of the definition
that veer so widely from their own.”
I’m sure they’ll be no shortage of additional praise for Andre Dawson in the next day or so. And no shortage of additional outrage for the BBWAA and the process. Of course, we get that every year, and nothing ever changes, so try not to get too wrapped up in it, OK?
The Mets are currently enjoying the spoils of the best young rotation in the game, but the big question is whether this is just a brief window or the start of sustained success. Given the huge prices on the free agent market, it’s going to be next to impossible to keep the band together, but at least one member of the rotation is open to sticking around for the long-term.
While there haven’t been any talks yet, All-Star right-hander Jacob deGrom told Kevin Kernan of the New York Post that he could see himself discussing an extension with the Mets.
“I’m a little bit older, so I might be more willing to do something like that,’’ deGrom told The Post at Mets pre-camp. “You just have to look at what is fair so both sides get a decent deal. It’s something I’d have to look into and make sure I agree with it.’’
It makes sense from deGrom’s perspective. He broke into the majors later than most prospects, so he’ll be 28 this June. Depending on whether he qualifies as a Super Two, he’ll be arbitration-eligible for the first time after either 2016 or 2017. Either way, he’s under team control through 2020, which means that he’s currently on track to hit free agency after his age-32 season. The market might not be kind to him even if he manages to stay healthy, so it could behoove him to get as much guaranteed money as possible right now. The Mets could always decide to play things year-to-year, but perhaps deGrom would be willing to settle for a discount in order to get them to buy out a free agent year or two. It’s a really interesting situation to think about, but odds are the two sides will wait on contract talks until he’s arbitration-eligible for the first time.
DeGrom owns a 2.61 ERA in 52 starts over his first two seasons in the majors. Among starters, only Zack Greinke, Jake Arrieta, and Clayton Kershaw have a lower ERA since the start of 2014.
The Royals and third baseman Mike Moustakas have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a two-year, $14.3 million deal, reports Jon Heyman of MLB Network.
The deal, which was initially discussed last month, buys out Moustakas’ final two years of arbitration. Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports that it’s believed he’ll make $5.6 million in 2016 and $8.7 million in 2017.
The 27-year-old Moustakas posted an underwhelming .668 OPS over his first four seasons in the majors, but he enjoyed a big postseason in 2014 before breaking out last season by batting .284/.348/.470 with 22 home runs and 82 RBI.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported this morning that free agent reliever Tommy Hunter required core muscle repair surgery earlier this offseason. Coming off a disappointing 2015, it’s understandable why he’s still on the market, but it sounds like he has at least one significant lead.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times hears that the Rays are having “advanced talks” with Hunter as they attempt to add an experienced arm to their bullpen. Nothing is considered close and Hunter is also talking to other clubs. Meanwhile, the Rays have been in touch with veteran reliever Ryan Webb while monitoring the trade market.
Hunter posted a 2.88 ERA as a late-inning arm from 2013-2014, but he compiled a mediocre 4.18 ERA over 58 appearances last season between the Orioles and Cubs. On the bright side, his velocity has held steady and his control is still very good. Despite the down year and core muscle surgery, Topkin writes that Hunter may be holding out for a multi-year deal.
Eric O'Flaherty wasn’t the only reclamation project added by the Pirates today, as the club also announced that they have signed left-hander Cory Luebke to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
Luebke once looked like a solid rotation piece for the Padres, but he hasn’t thrown a pitch in the majors since April 27, 2012. He’s undergone a pair of Tommy John surgeries since. Now 30 years old, he logged seven innings in the minors last season before requiring a procedure to remove loose bodies around a nerve in his forearm. The Padres cut ties with him in November after declining a $7.5 million club option for 2016.
It’s hard to count on much from Luebke at this point, but he told Adam Berry of MLB.com that he feels healthy and hopes to compete for a bullpen job in the spring.