Today we’ve got a bunch of smaller links, rumors, and signings, so we’ll put it all in one post.
- The Cardinals signed reliever Ryan Franklin for 2008-09 with a club option for 2010. I was waiting for the financial details to come out, but they still haven’t. According to Rick Hummel, it’s at least $2MM per year. That’s pretty much chump change to almost any team, so no big loss if it doesn’t pan out. Franklin has actually been the Cardinals’ best pitcher this year. He deserves credit for his superb control and 50% groundball rate, though he’s been strangely tough to hit for a guy whiffing fewer than four per nine innings. Franklin has a .226 BABIP, which should regress toward his team’s .294 mark. Franklin already owns one of the greatest fluke BABIP performances of the decade, when he posted a .248 mark in 2003 en route to a 3.57 ERA.
- Speaking of questionable reliever contract extensions, Shawn Chacon wants in. To be fair, his 2.98 relief ERA this year is solid, and his peripheral stats aren’t terrible. But extending him at $2-3MM annually just doesn’t seem wise for the Pirates.
- Jim Salisbury discusses the awful Pat Burrell contract, noting that it seemed like a good idea at the time.
- Richard Justice tries to figure out why Morgan Ensberg is on the Astros’ roster. Ensberg has really lost it since he posted a .945 OPS with 36 home runs in 2005. It wasn’t that long ago; he deserves a look with the Twins or something.
- Rob Bradford discusses how the Josh Beckett contract extension came to fruition. Great timing by Theo Epstein; now he has Beckett at well below market value. Kenny Williams tried this with Mark Buehrle last summer but was rebuffed.
- J.P. Ricciardi clarifies his A.J. Burnett comments.
- A new pitch has been invented. This is going to take the world by storm.
- Neifi Perez = busted.
- Gotham Baseball debunks the Lastings Milledge to Washington for a reliever rumor. Mark Healey also thinks the Mets’ interest in White Sox starters has been overstated.
- There’s a good chance Rockies’ first baseman Joe Koshansky is traded. Let’s not get too excited though; Kevin Goldstein says he becomes an average big league first baseman in a perfect world. The 25 year-old is slugging .486 at a hitters’ park in Triple A.