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Odds and Ends: Phelps, Mirabelli, Varitek

Random rumors and links for your perusal...

  • The Cardinals inked Josh Phelps to a minor league deal that could be worth up to $1MM.  I always liked Phelps; he's a more than capable bench guy.
  • The Red Sox bit the bullet and brought Doug Mirabelli back for another round.  Tony Massarotti notes that the Red Sox may sign Jason Varitek to an extension this spring worth upward of $10MM annually.  I still like the idea of going after Kenji Johjima next winter.
  • RotoAuthority ranks the shortstops for fantasy leagues, hot off the press.


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Can Mirabelli teach anyone else to catch a knuckleball?

I like Phelps a lot too, Tim. It is amazing to me that noone seems to ever give him a chance as a halftime DH at the very least. He could be VERY effective in that role.

FineHamAbounds, I don't think that matters. After 2008 there's a good chance that Wakefield won't be back, and the Sox wouldn't have to worry about the knuckleball any more. (Unless Charlie Zink reaches the majors...)

Tim, I don't get the appeal of Kenji Johjima to the Sox. Last year Varitek his 3 more HR thank Johjima in 50 fewer AB, Varitek's OBP was .045 higher. 'Tek might be older but he's still great at calling a game, and his hitting may not be much but it isn't as bad as Johjima. Hell, in 991 career AB, Johjima's drawn a TOTAL of 35 BB; Varitek doubled that in 2007 alone.

I understand that Johjima would be a more long-term solution; but honestly, with how poor his numbers are, I think Kottaras could produce similar numbers by the time 2009 starts. So why not have Varitek sign for 2 more years, and have him slowly relinquish Starting Catcher position to Kottaras?

"Last year Varitek HIT 3 more HR THAN Johjima..."

That's what I get for not proofreading.

Apologies if this has been mentioned elsewhere, but, Tim, wow, is this cool:

"On a Caribbean beach, it is wonderful not to read or listen to lawyer-speak and lawyer-leak. There are drawbacks, such as no Morning Joe or MLBTradeRumors.com on my BlackBerry"

From Peter Gammons espn blog today. Congratulations, dude.

I like how the Cardinals won't even for a second entertain the idea of pursuing a free agent requiring a contract north of $15MM but they end up blowing as much money or more on fairly worthless spare parts that even Pittsburgh deems expendable instead of giving any of their own farmhands a chance. this franchise has become a joke.

I like this Phelps deal with the Cardinals. Give Pujols a good backup, a 3rd string catcher if Molina or LaRue get hurt and 1 million dollars will not brake the bank.

The Gammons mention was awesome!


I'm not sure if you created those shortstop rankings. BUT how can you rank Ryan Theriot(.266, 3hr, 45rbi) Felipe Lopez(.245, 9hr, 50rbi) and Julio Lugo(.237, 8hr, 73rbi) above Jhonny Peralta(.270, 21hr, 72rbi)

I just don't understand where they show they had a better year than Peralta. Grated, Jhonny is prone to the strikeout, but he still was able to bat .270 and was one of the top hitters for the Indians in the playoffs. I really think he is underrated and doesnt get the "respect" he deserves. Thoughts anyone else?

it is just for fantasy, but ryan theriot is an awful SS. he offers stolen bases, and thats it. but, since it is fantasy, i guess it depends on your strategy. If you like to use your middle infielders for stolen bases, and your corners and OF's for power, theriot is going to be ranked higher, along with other stolen base threats like lugo and lopez.

I've always been intersted to see what phelps could do in 500 at bats I thought San Francisco was going to give him a spot but I guess that would have been too out there for sabean.

The Sox will keep Tek, he is the club, and its actually to early for the Sox go groom a replacement, because a backup working towards a starter needs gametime, that would never happen in Boston with Tek. Its not like the Sox are a team where this guy could DH, or play some 1B.
The only opening for extra playing time above 1.something games a week is SS, and how many catchers can play good SS?

Endorsed by Gammons.. just after you go pro.. thats pretty handy. Congrats Tim.

(((hehehe, TheNextGM beat me to it… Well here is my post anyway)))

OK, 5X5 league is BA, HR, RBI, R & SB ~ right?

07 .270 BA, 21 HR, 72 RBI, 87, 4 SB
06 .257 BA, 13 HR, 68 RBI, 84 R, 0 SB
05 .292 BA, 24 HR, 78 RBI, 82 R, 0 SB
Avg .273 BA, 19 HR, 72 RBI, 84 R, 1 SB

Now, how in the world will that ever get you fewer points than the likes of say:
A) .266 BA, 3 HR, 45 RBI, 80 R, 28 SB (Theriot 07)
B) .245 BA, 9 HR, 50 RBI, 70 R, 24 SB (Lopez 07)
C) .295 BA, 6 HR, 57 RBI, 89 R, 39 SB (Lugo 05 ~ had to go back that far to find a good year that even comes close to comparing…)

So although we have like 25-30 less SB, we also have 10-20 more HR, upwards of 20 RBI more, a comparable at worst Runs and BA better than and at worst equal to the good one from Lugo I dug out. Are 15 HR and 20 RBI really worth less than 25 SB in your league?

I’m sorry, but how Peralta could ever be worth less than atleast those guys and probably more on that list (in a 5X5 Ranking) just doesn’t seem logical in my mind. I think you may have possibly made a pretty big boo-boo Tim…

Just a side note ~ Do you really think Theriot will have that many SB again in 2008? Last year, almost all of them came when he was hitting 1st or 2nd in the lineup ~ with the addition of Fukudome (and possibly even Roberts), I cant imagine he ever gets anywhere close to that lineup spot again. Will he steal many bases hitting infront of the pitcher all the time? I can see some, but with such a weak hitter at the plate I would imagine most of the concentration from the opposing team would be on Ryan possibly stealing 2nd. You sure don’t want to throw 2 outs away trying to steal 2B either; a bunch of Stirke-um out, throw-um out double plays would be a disaster for a contending team. I’m not sure if we will even see Theriot reaching 25 again in 08… (and before Cubs fans blindly bash me for that, I’m not bashing Theriot ~ I’m solely thinking about the situation he will be in)

i was thinking the same thing about total points, and the only logical thing i could come up with was that draft strategy i posted previously. i guess you need to get your SB's from somewhere, and it seems that tim feels you should get your power from yoru CI, and OF, while you get your SB's from MI.


You'd better pray that Phelps is only used as a pinch hitter ... he's a brutally bad catcher, and if he spends a significant amount of time playing first base, you're team is screwed. In the NL, he's only useful as a bench bat.

Any standardish league, extra steals are worth waaaay more than extra HRs, as far as points in the standings. Steals are typically undervalued in fantasy.


Then why is JJ Hardy ranked above Theriot and Lopez? Hardy could be said to have rather identical projections to Peralta across the board (well, out of the 5X5 categories atleast) ~ how did he made the jump?

good point darkstar1661

i wish doug mirabellis song when he comes to back would be the theme song from the cartoon doug, that would be worth whatever we paid him, which i think was half a mill

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