Let’s see what we’ve got going on today in a potpourri-style format.
As predicted, Eric Byrnes was non-tendered last night. I can’t possibly think of a better way for the Cubs to turn the Jacque Jones signing into a positive. If you sum up Byrnes and Jones’ salaries, you’ll be getting solid stats from RF for the price. Assuming Dusty Baker understands what a platoon is and how all that works.
Of course, it’s probably one more roster spot than the Cubs wanted to use on this type of thing since they already have John Mabry. But Mabry can back up Aramis Ramirez, and the Cubs can carry one less pitcher and make it work. I put a word in to a Cubs source of mine, and he agreed that the idea makes sense (who wouldn’t agree) and mentioned that the Cubs have liked Byrnes in the past.
UPDATE: Just talked to a second Cubs source, and he echoed the sentiment held by many readers of the site: Hendry didn’t give Jones $16MM to platoon him. He’s a full-timer for the most part.
Kirby Arnold reports that the Mariners offered Gil Meche to the Cubs for Corey Patterson. At first, I said, "Sure, why not." But then I looked at Meche’s numbers, and I realized there’s no way he can help the ballclub. When a pitcher loses his ability to strike batters out, as Meche may have, he has to counter the increased hits he’s surrendering with good control. Or the ability to keep the ball in the park. Meche appears to have none of these traits, and would be a frustrating spot starter who would allow tons of baserunners. I might rather have Josh Fogg at this point. There’s got to be something slightly better out there for the Cubs.
Alfonso Soriano won’t move off second base for the Nationals and is pretty much raising a stink about being dealt to Washington. Let’s see here, are there any teams with GMs dumber than Jim Bowden who might make a trade for Sori? Dan O’Brien’s club doesn’t have a need for a 2B; Placido Polanco is firmly entrenched in Detroit…maybe Littlefield is interested?
Is Millwood really getting a five year deal from someone? Insane. Incredible timing to have your 2.86 ERA season. Best timing award for the NL: Todd Jones.
My Mets guy is saying the club is still talking to the Dodgers about Jeff Kent, but right now it’s a "pipe dream." Doesn’t seem like the two teams will agree on anything. The Mets still have some faith in Victor Zambrano (or maybe they’re just trying to save face), but Omar feels that after adding Julian Tavarez his bullpen will be pretty much set.
The Mariners seem desperate to get rid of Jeremy Reed after pushing hard to obtain him for Freddy Garcia. I guess they don’t understand that center fielders are hard to find and Reed will get better. After the masterstroke that was the Johjima signing, Bill Bavasi has taken a step backward with Jarrod Washburn.