I and others suspected that the Cardinals were bidding against themselves in the Matt Holliday negotiations. Ken Rosenthal suggested yesterday that they had some help via some Boras bluffing:
Would Scott Boras have pulled an Adrian Beltre with Matt
taking a one-year deal in search of a better free-agent
The Cardinals believed the answer was yes, and their fear of
Holliday prompted them to award him a seven-year contract,
to a source with knowledge of the club’s thinking.
Rosenthal says that the fear was that the Yankees or someone would give Holliday $20 million or something on a one year deal. He quotes an anonymous baseball executive who is really dubious that Holliday would take such a deal, however, as he is on the record saying that he wants to put down roots for his family.
I think the bluff is doubly silly. Sure, Holliday may not have taken such a deal, but what makes the Cardinals think that such a deal would even develop? The Yankees may or may not be satisfied with Brett Gardner in left, but even if they go in a different direction, is it really plausible to think that they’d make a one-and-done knock-your-socks-off offer to Holliday? And who else could make such an offer?
Yes, I suppose anything is possible, and yes, it’s way easier to throw barbs from the sidelines than it is to actually sit across the table from Boras, but as far as bluffs go, Matt Holliday taking a one year deal to make his market at age 30 seems like one that’s worth calling.
Because of course he did.
It wasn’t just his first at bat, but it was his first pitch. It came off of John Kilichowski, an 11th round draft pick of the St. Louis Cardinals out of Vanderbilt. The ball went out to left center, off the bat of the lefty Tebow.
Next time, meat, throw him a breaking ball.
The other night, Blue Jays reliever Joaquin Benoit needed help getting off the field after the second benches-clearing incident with the Yankees. It was later revealed that Benoit tore a calf muscle during the fracas, ending his season.
Yesterday he pointed the finger at just about everyone else for the incidents like the one that led to his injury. Hitters specifically. From The Star:
“I believe as pitchers we’re entitled to use the whole plate and pitch in if that’s the way we’re going to succeed,” Benoit said. “I believe that right now baseball is taking things so far that in some situations most hitters believe that they can’t be brushed out. Some teams take it personally.”
That “take it personally” line is interesting coming from Benoit as, in this instance, it seemed pretty clear that the whole plunking exchange which led to his injury started because Josh Donaldson took an inside pitch that did not seem to be a purpose pitch at all, too personally.
Did Benoit take a veiled swipe at his teammate here? If so, that’s pretty notable. If not it’s notable in another way, right? As it suggests that Benoit believes it’s OK for his teammates to take issue with inside pitches but anyone else who does is part of the problem?
Which is it, Joaquin?