Mike Downey at CNN writes a column about how Pete Rose has served enough time and should be reinstated. It’s no different than any of the other gabillion Pete Rose columns so it’s not of any special interest in and of itself. Outside of the fact, maybe, that Downey is a Hall of Fame voter and says that he would like the chance to vote for Rose for rose rather than have him be off the ballot.
While the Rose topic has been talked to death generally, I do think that people have overlooked his actual Hall of Fame chances should he be reinstated. Specifically, I question whether the same voters who have taken moral stands against the PED guys actually would vote for Rose whether he’s eligible or not.
After all, these guys are freely admitting that they’re imposing a higher standard than MLB imposes. I mean, Barry Bonds and all of those guys are 100% eligible for the Hall and they’re not sniffing induction. Who’s to say that Rose will get any different treatment? Some have, in the past, drawn distinctions between Rose and the PED guys. And have drawn distinctions between Pete Rose the player and Pete Rose the manager. As such, I think his vote totals would be healthier than that of say Bonds and Clemens. But I can’t see how a full 75% of the people who have decided that lying and breaking rules and affecting the outcome of games in some way that is unquantifiable is a disqualifying factor for some players wouldn’t be one for Rose.
Personally I’d vote for Rose for the Hall if he were eligible because he was clearly an elite player who deserves induction. But that standard isn’t the one that Hall of Fame voters have applied over the years. As such, I think he’d have a tough sled.
According to Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post, Nationals infielder Danny Espinosa declined to attend the team’s annual Winterfest because of his dissatisfaction with management following their trade for outfielder Adam Eaton.
A source told Castillo that Espinosa’s unhappiness stemmed from a belief that the acquisition would jeopardize his starting role in 2017. With Eaton in center field, Trea Turner will likely return to his post at shortstop, leaving Espinosa out in the cold — or, as the case may be, on the bench. The move shouldn’t come as a big surprise to Espinosa, however, as Nationals’ GM Mike Rizzo spoke to the possibility of trading the infielder or reassigning him to a utility role back in early November.
Offensively, the 29-year-old had a down year in 2016, slashing just .209/.306/.378 with 24 home runs in 601 PA. Defensively, he still profiles among the top shortstops in the National League, with eight DRS (Defensive Runs Saved) and 8.3 Def (Defensive Runs Above Average) in his seventh year with the club.
Espinosa will reach free agency after the 2017 season.
The Red Sox might be trying to move the wrong pitcher, according to the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo. Cafardo revealed that while the Sox have been trying to market right-hander Clay Buchholz, more teams would be interested in trades involving southpaw Drew Pomeranz.
The club appears reluctant to deal Pomeranz, especially because his price tag comes in at a cool $4.7 million to Buchholz’s $13.5 million in 2017. Those who have already expressed interest in the veteran hurlers, including the Twins, Mariners and Royals, also seem put off by Buchholz’s salary requirements as he enters his 32nd year.
Health could be another factor preventing teams from jumping to make trade offers, as Cafardo quotes an AL executive who believes the “medicals on both Pomeranz and Buchholz probably aren’t that great.” Neither pitcher suffered any major injuries during the 2016 season, though Pomeranz missed just over a week of play due to forearm soreness.
Pomeranz outperformed his fellow starter in 2016, pitching to a 3.32 ERA and career-best 9.8 K/9 through 170 2/3 innings with the Padres and Red Sox. He got off to an exceptionally strong start in San Diego, where his ERA dropped to 2.47 through the first half of the year before the Padres dealt him to Boston for minor league right-hander Anderson Espinoza. Buchholz, on the other hand, struggled with a 4.78 ERA and saw a decline in both his BB/9 and K/9 rates as he worked out a career-low 1.69 K/BB through 139 1/3 innings with the Sox.