Author: Craig Calcaterra

cespedes getty

The Mariners have spoken with the Red Sox about Yoenis Cespedes


This is fun.

We’ve heard about their possible interest in Upton and Kemp before. This is the first I’ve seen Cespedes mentioned. At first blush it seems that Iwakuma is an awful lot to pay for a guy who, while he certainly has power, is going to be hurt by the ballpark and, in all likelihood, will seek to walk in a year. But Iwakuma himself is only under team control through 2015 himself. Maybe if they Sox threw someone in with Cespedes.

Whatever the case, the M’s are certainly justified in taking a win-now approach. And a power bat to complement Cano and Seager would be nice to have.

Baseball has four of the 15 worst owners in sports

Fred Wilpon, Jeff Wilpon

Over at Rolling Stone Jeb Lund assesses the 15 worst owners in professional sports. You’ll be happy to know that baseball, while not claiming the top spot or even dominating the finalists, nonetheless makes a good showing: four of the 15 worst owners call the National Pastime home.

The “best” of the four worst owners are the Wilpons of New York. Lund describes their M.O. thusly:

Thanks to wise investment, the Wilpons have lived on a shoestring budget for six years, taking profits from their ownership in SNY to make up team shortfalls and hoping that a tight budget and crossed fingers can arrest the team cratering that began in 2009. The Wilpons have seemingly never met a problem for which an absence of a solution will do, unless they have a solution worse than the problem, and that solution is invariably “them.”

Also featured: David Glass of Kansas City, The Ricketts family of Chicago and Jeff Loria of Miami. Peaches, all.

Let go of your Troy Tulowitzki fantasies, Yankees fans

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At least those of you who still harbor them after Yankees brass made the rounds to tell everyone that they aren’t going to be making big dollar deals, be it in free agency or via trade, this offseason. Because as Andy Martino reports, that approach appears to be more than a mere talking point this winter.

Martino says, for starters, that teams which have spoken to the Rockies over the past two weeks do not believe Tulowitzki will be traded. But even if he was being shopped, the Yankees legitimately do not seem to be interested in a $114 million commitment to a 30-year-old.

Again, it’s the sort of thing that makes sense given what appears to be going on with the Yankees at the moment. But there are always some that either hold out hope or assume that the Yankees are lying when they say they’re not doing something.

More Hall of Fame ballots like Adam Rubin’s please


Adam Rubin is submitting, more or less, a perfect Hall of Fame ballot: Bonds, Clemens, Bagwell, Biggio, Johnson, Pedro, Smoltz, Piazza, Schilling, Raines.

Obviously there is quibbling space, but that’s only because there are only ten slots and more then ten worthy. Rubin notes that, yes, if he had more than ten places he’d include Mussina, Trammell and Edgar Martinez. He likewise laments his inability to include Jeff Kent and Lee Smith, who Rubin has voted for in the past.

But the basics are solid: use all ten slots when there are clearly ten worthy players (anyone who submits fewer than ten names on their ballot given this field possesses an ahistorical view of what the Hall of Fame is and an unrealistic view of what it should be). Say bollocks to the PED hand-wringing. Don’t play the “this guy can’t get in before THIS guy gets in” game but, rather, just pick the ten best eligible players.

Rubin put this ballot together in less than 24 hours after it was released. It’s not that hard, actually, even if it is a frustrating process. No matter how many voters will spend the next month loudly proclaiming how agonizing a process it is and how it’s really, really awful and unfair and everything. Poor souls.

You get to vote for ten amazing players. There are more than ten amazing players on the ballot. Fill up your slots, offer your regrets for the people you have to leave off and get on with it.


The Blue Jays have some interest in Jay Bruce

jay bruce getty

Jon Morosi reports the Blue Jays have talked about Jay Bruce as a possible trade target.

Which would make sense for a team that lost Adam Lind and is likely going to lose Melky Cabrera. Bruce, like them, is a lefty with some pop and would look good in the Jays’ lineup.

Morosi notes that the Padres, too, are looking at Bruce. Which basically means that he’s turning into the Pablo Sandoval Consolation Prize, I guess.