Great Moments in stupid steroids grandstanding

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Newsday’s Wallace Matthews will not be out-crazied by anyone. After positing — against all evidence, really — that Bud Selig will be remembered as a worthless, failed, commissioner, he suggests one way for the Budster to rehabilitate his legacy:

The way he can do it is simple. All Bud Lite has to do is declare that – under the powers granted the commissioner to act in the best interests of the game – baseball will once again recognize Roger Maris as the all-time single-season home-run leader and Hank Arron [sic] as baseball’s career home-run king.

End of story, cue the crescendo, ring down the curtain on a transcendent commissionership.

Matthews says such a move would take “courage” and “integrity.”  If by courage and integrity he means “stupidity” and “ignorance,” sure, I’m totally with him. And that stupidity goes beyond Wallace’s seeming inability to spell Hank Aaron’s name.

Setting aside all of the chaos such a move would foment, when does Wallace propose that baseball start recognizing records again?  Now? Ten years from now?  Tell us, Wallace, when did the “steroid era” begin and end?  Also, given that one of the most high-profile steroids cheats of the era was a pitcher, what does Matthews propose to do about those records?

And while we’re asking questions, does Matthews even think that steroids are a problem apart form how they impact the big records?  Because as I sit here right now, I can’t recall him ever commenting on what steroids mean for, say, the borderline minor leaguer or the desperate veteran just trying to hang on. With Matthews, steroids only matter for one reason: records, records, records.  Though Matthews probably counts that as three reasons (using his fingers for the counting).

Here’s some advice, kids: whenever someone is peddling simplistic solutions to difficult problems, they’re almost always 100% full of it.  Steroids in baseball and how they impact the big records is a complicated issue. Matthews’ solution is so brainless, it gives the concept of simplicity a bad name.  You do the math.

Giants nearing deal with Cameron Maybin

Cameron Maybin
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The Giants are finalizing a minor league deal for free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin, according to Andrew Baggarly and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The team has not confirmed the signing, but it’s in keeping with their stated goal of adding more veteran presence and outfield options to their roster in advance of the 2019 season.

Maybin, 31, appeared in back-to-back gigs with the Marlins and Mariners in 2018. He slashed an underwhelming .249/.326/.336 with four home runs, 10 stolen bases (in 15 chances), a .662 OPS, and 0.5 fWAR through 384 plate appearances for the two clubs, a clear improvement over his totals in 2017 but still shy of the career numbers he posted with the Padres all the way back in 2011. It’s not only his offense that has tanked, but his speed and defense in center field, all of which he’ll try to improve as he jockeys for a roster spot in camp this month.

The Giants’ outfield has been largely depleted of any kind of consistent talent lately, especially taking into account the recent departures of Hunter Pence, Gregor Blanco, and Gorkys Hernández. Even with the acquisition of, say, All-Star right fielder Bryce Harper, there’s nothing standing in the way of Maybin and fellow veteran signee Gerardo Parra grabbing hold of full- or part-time roles this year, though they’ll need to outperform candidates like Chris Shaw, Steven Duggar, Drew Ferguson, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater, Craig Gentry, Mike Gerber, and others first.

In a previous report on Friday, Baggarly revealed that a “handshake understanding” had been established with several veteran players already this offseason, all but guaranteeing them regular starting opportunities over the course of the season. How those agreements will be affected by spring training performances remains to be seen, but at least for now, the Giants appear prepared to give their newest players a long leash as they try to get back on top in the NL West.