There are no shadows in darkness. Shadows only exist once light is cast on an object. There’s been a great deal of darkness exposed in baseball and the Angels lately because light is finally being shed on longtime problems.
Some people suck. Mickey Callaway is (allegedly) one of them. But we only know this because five women spoke up and shed light on his behavior. Twenty years ago his behavior likely stays in the dark and the string of victims continues.
MLB needs to make it easier for women to shine light on such behavior. The Olympics has a hotline, the NCAA has resource center, there’s help for youth sports, and RAINN does great work. Where are you MLB?
Again, this isn’t a new problem. And, just like with positive PED tests, when names come out that shows the system to root out the unscrupulous ones is working to some degree. Let’s get a real system in place and be happy when it works.
Speaking of women in MLB, how long until a woman is an umpire at the big league level? The NFL and NBA have women officials, after all, and I’m pretty sure replacing Angel Hernandez and Joe West would be considered progress on multiple fronts.
Another crisis in America is mental health. Drew Robinson’s incredible story has gripped the baseball world. Shortly thereafter Andrelton Simmons revealed his battle with suicidal thoughts. One man shining his light inspiring another to do the same. That was followed by Levi Weaver of The Athletic shedding light on his mental health journey. Again, a generation or so ago they would have faced their battles in isolated darkness, considered mentally weak, scoffed at for having it all and not realizing it.
The Drew Robinson link is your long form reading and the time is well worth it.
Of course, for Angels fans there has been a series of calamities these last two years. Thankfully Mat cares enough about the team to call them out over misdeeds.
Yes this is my “glass half full” response to this week. But it is true. We’re only seeing these problems because light is being shone on them. They’ve always existed but now we can bring them out into the light, look at them, and hopefully work towards a better environment for the future.
And while I generally despise moral relativism, if you think baseball is in bad shape now take a look at Sunday’s Super Bowl game. You have a massive cheater who looks like a choir boy. There’s also a violent nutjob, and a guy who threw furniture off a balcony nearly killing a baby and has been accused of multiple sexual offenses on one sideline and a guy who beat his pregnant girlfriend then beat and likely broke his two year old son’s arm on the other.
Roberto Osuna is clearly in the wrong sport.
Back to real baseball, the Angels completed the trade of Jahmai Jones to Baltimore for Alex Cobb. Fangraphs perfectly describes Cobb as “something a little worse than average but significantly better than replacement level.”
Honestly this hurts a bit. Jahmai is a great guy and I’ve grown incredibly fond of him over the years. When I was first added as a staff writer at the old site I sent out a series of messages through Facebook requesting interviews. Jahmai replied immediately. Four interviews and countless text messages later he’d made the show, where he still made time for me.
I’ll say it again, you’re lucky if your kid chooses Jahmai Jones as his favorite player.
Essentially taking Jahmai’s place on the depth chart is Robel Garcia, a former Cub with huge power and a lot of swing and miss.
Where does this leave the Angels roster now? Another great breakdown by The Athletic.
Looking for good news, MLB Network named Anthony Rendon the best third baseman in the game.
And despite being surround by stars like Rendon and Trout, David Fletcher still stands out. Glad to see he’s getting some love.
After bringing Cobb on board, the 2021 payroll is creeping up near the 2020 level. Arte said payroll will not go down, he didn’t say it would go up. Depending on the amount of Cobb’s money that is deferred, we likely still have enough for some lower level bullpen arms or maybe a Goodwin type to patrol the outfield.
Bullpen arms are coming off the board quickly, though, and that likely continues as Spring Training gets nearer. Alex Colome stays in the AL Central and joins the rival Twins while the Diamondbacks snag Joakim Soria, much to the despair of our own Chase Kimura.
Definitely look for Perry to try to build depth through minor league deals. We often throw the term “minor league” deal out there like it is a standard, cut and dry deal. That is anything but the case. They are surprisingly complex and differ greatly from MLB contracts.
The minors are always a struggle, no more so than in 2020. Here’s a very interesting piece on how the players navigated the unprecedented year.
As far as the 2021 season getting going, the MLBPA and owners continue to act like high schoolers and couldn’t even join the same call with federal authorities to hear suggestions on starting the season safely. The MLBPA will get their own call in a few days and hear the same suggestions.
I think it is only fitting on this week I honor those who bring light to things that I honor Wendell Smith, legendary sports writer for the Pittsburgh Courier. The baseball HOF has an incredible collection of his work. Wendell was given a nice portrayal in the movie 42 and was instrumental in pushing the public discourse on integrating baseball and by extension America. He also ghost wrote Jackie Robinson’s newspaper column and much of his autobiography. The newspaper column is a fascinating angle often overlooked in the Jackie Robinson story. I definitely recommend that link.
That’s Wendell’s picture up above. I’m going to get lost in those papers for a while.
Enjoy the big game Sunday or don’t. The clock is ticking towards Spring Training…..
With how Perry has worked so far this winter, I imagine he’s been on the phone with the Dodgers now. They have to sort out some 40-man issues now because they still need a 3B. I’m proposing a trade to the Angels. David Price and $30 mil (or more) for a PTBNL) Thoughts on Price for 2 years at $15 mil per?
Right now The Price is wrong at $64.0 million over 2 years. However the Chowds are on the hook for 1/2 of that. Do we need to get the Doyers to kick in an extra $10.0 M?
Bundy, Heaney, Canning, Quintana, Cobb, Price, Ohtani and an out of options Barria as long reliever?
That would likely get us through a season without any waiver claims taking the hill.
Or for the same $15 million we could likely sign Melancon and Rosenthal and just bullpen games to death.
According to Cots we’re still $20.0 million below the CBT Threshhold so I say lets get both Price and a reliever.
We’re also only about $5 million from Arte’s previous high payroll. And the only thing certain about fan attendance is that we will be the last to allow them.
Bullpen. Games. To DEATH! I’d be far more into watching us try to be the 1990 Reds than watch Price’s bitch face be meh on the mound while he and his stupid dog and scooter and what ever man child bullshit he comes up with this year work on his SoMo brand.
Yeah, best case I can see now is bullpen to death. Probably more recent Rays than 90s Reds.
Bundy and Quintana are treated like normal starters. Heaney, Canning, Cobb get 2 trips through the lineup. Barria and Pena are multi inning/bridge type guys. Claudio and Buttrey are low leverage. Iglesias and Mayers are making the team. So that leaves one key spot, a Melancon type would be nice there.
A typical night might be Heaney 4 2/3rds, Barria 1 1/3, then bullpen used as needed. Next night Canning for 4 2/3rds, Pena for 2, etc.
This plan needs some optionable depth (Guerra) and pales compared to the Dodgers, but on most nights I doubt we’d get embarrassed. And on the nights a lead did make it to the 7th inning I’d trust it to hold.
What happens in late July when the bullpen is gassed?
We desperately need arms with options. Sandoval, I think the kid from SD, Suarez.
It’s far from a perfect plan, but I don’t see rotation help coming.
We trade Adell and Packy and maybe one or two more for German Marquez.
Dodgers 40 man is already full so somebody will have to go before this signing becomes “official.”
Most likely a fielder. The Dodgers try to hold onto pitching at all costs. They understand pitching is important.
Thing is, though we need pitching, I can’t stand David Price.
Prompt: You are stranded on the only remaining desert island in the world after climate change. Trevor Bauer and David Price are your only companions. Who dies last?
Let’s think big. Adell or Marsh for Kiebert Ruiz and Gonsolin or May.
Like it. The simulator has May a little higher than Adell and Gonsolin lower than Marsh.
it’ll be fascinating to see what this does for Odorizzi’s contract. I figured it would go up in any case because the supply has dwindled and teams still need pitching but the Bauer contract will likely help Odorizzi.
Maybe the greatest rotation of all time, CY YOUNG AWARD WINNERS Kershaw, Price, Bauer, plus Buhner, Urias and May. Jeez no weak link. Well we always got Cobb. They got Betts, we got Fowler. Maybe when we play them at the end of October………..
Bauer to the Dodgers, 3 years, 102 million. New records for highest paid player in the game.
Year 2 = $45 mil. smfh
What does that translate to in California after taxes: an annual salary of $70,000 or so?
Plus food stamps, yup.
Jeff Luhnow’s lawsuit against the Astros is dismissed with prejudice (meaning permanently banished to the Phantom Zone).
the rumored Mets/Bauer offer includes $40mil for this year. And this is why I expected Trout’s long-term contract to have a $45mil+ AAV. At this rate Mike will be underpaid soon.
And Bauer just signed with The Dodgers.
I’m looking forward to the details of the Dodger deal.
3 years $102 million guaranteed.
$40 million in 2021 and an opt out after the season
$45 million in 2022 and an opt out after that season
$17 million in 2023.
I’d fully expect him to opt out after two years.
$40 mil in 2021, $45 mil in 2022. Poor Mikey now has a 2nd rate contract. Still pretty good, though!
Might need help making mortgage pymt.
From MLBTR: “Bauer and the Dodgers agreed to a three-year deal with opt-out provisions after year one and year two of the contract, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports.MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand adds that Bauer is guaranteed a total of $102MM on the deal, which includes a $40MM salary in 2021 and a $45MM salary in 2022. Both marks establish new records for the highest single-season salary, though the contract’s overall $34MM average annual value is still a bit shy of Gerrit Cole’s record $36MM.”
The rich get richer. The Dodgers have great ownership, an intelligent front office, and a winning culture that is envious. Their pitching staff is scary good.
It’s just not fair for Arte. I mean the Angels are a small market team with very limited revenue sources. The franchise has been continuously disadvantaged by large market teams signing away talent like Trout and Rendon. The players we do sign mysteriously get injured and stop performing. Poor Pujols aged more rapidly than most humans and was unable to continue his HoF production when he joined the Angels. Arte always hires employees of the highest ethical standards that never fail to represent the franchise in the best light possible. Its. Just. Not. Fair.
And a payroll that will now be $40,000,000 over the Competitive Balance Tax Threshhold when they resign JT. All Stupid Cheap Arte needs to do is add $60,000,000 to this years payroll and we’ll be right there.
Yep, they will blow past the range and into tax territory. But as much as everyone seems to “fear” the tax, what will the Dodgers tax bill be next season – $7M or $8M ? It’s not like the Guggenheim Baseball Management ownership group will be eating ‘chicken backs and cold beans’ due to the tax bill…..
+40 Million would be a $17M tax (since I think they got under the threshhold last year) PLUS their top pick in the next MLB draft would drop 10 spots .
Time for PTP to make a deal for Former D-Ray David Price?
From MLBTR: “The Dodgers owe a 20 percent tax on the first $20MM by which they exceed the $210MM mark and a 32 percent tax on the next $20MM. Roster Resource’s Jason Martinez projects the team’s luxury obligations at roughly $239.5MM — meaning the Dodgers’ tax penalty, at present, will be a hair north of $7MM. That’s assuming no further additions or subtractions to the payroll, of course, but it’s certainly possible they could look for some creative trades to alter that financial outlook — particularly if they still hope to bring back franchise cornerstone Justin Turner.”
Whoops . You are right the tax rate graduates at 20 million & 40 million over the Threshhold I though it applied to the entire overage. But I would still think the Dodgers probably don’t want to lose draft pick positions if they sign JT so there’s a chance we can capitalize.
Annnnnnd boom ….same email but selling the Dexter Fowler signing and then asking if I’m interested in a 10 game package. message to Angels Marketing Department : Dexter Fowler and Alex Cobb are not going to interest me in buying a 10 game package, in fact, they actually do the exact opposite. Nobody is pumped and excited about Fowler and Cobb in 2021, NOBODY !!!!!
I’m not getting those. Perhaps because they still have my 2020 money?
Any way, I’ll do the premium e vouchers. And this year they’re already paid for. I totally enable Arte but I so love time at the ballpark with family and friends.
As your son gets older you will enjoy it even more.
The link to David Fletcher above is worth reading. I am so happy that finally some folks are showing respect and acknowledging his talent. While I am disappointed that we did not bring Simmons back I am glad that we held on to Fletch. Looking for a big year from our second baseman in 2021.
Your links to the football players is why i will be playing golf during the Stupor Bowl, at least until dark. I have zero ambition to watch the stupor bowl or go to any party to watch it.
I’ll be spending time with my son. My interest in football has really dropped since I became a father.
I’m sure I’ll catch part of the game, though.
I’ll be spending Saturday with my sone for Little League and then Sunday morning at the batting cages. Besides golf on Sunday, the rest is entire family time with my wife, son, daughter, usually bike riding or going to the park. My wife lays down the “No Electronics” law for a minimum of 4 hours a day, everyday on the weekend, where it is family time. And that is besides the “movie nights” where we make popcorn and watch a movie.
You have your priorities straight. Really hoping to catch a game or two with your crew this year.
If they open up the stadium to fans, we will be there.